There’s been a flurry of activity in the news regarding Lebanon that spells out imminent doom to me, though because the points are a bit defused the connections don’t seem as obvious as they become when you pile all the separate news pieces together..
Terror rising / Father Terror
Iran focus had yesterday’s London Times news regarding Imad Mugniyeh, he’s been on the FBI most wanted terrorist list from well before the days of Osama. He’s terror marshal number 1, responsible for helping found and building up the Hezbollah terror arms, alleged to have had a part to play in the Marine bombings blast which slaughtered 280+ Marines, the US embassy Lebanon blast (65 killed), multiple attacks against Israeli targets, airline targets, wanted in the EU for terrorism charges, it never ends with Imad.
Many credit him with inventing the crime against humanity today known as suicide bombing. It was Imad who got on the bandwagon of having martyrs slam bomb laden trucks into targets.. The reason he was in the news?
Iran is looking to him to takeover anti western terrorism on Iran’s behalf.
IRAN’S president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, attended a meeting in Syria earlier this year with one of the world’s most wanted terrorists, according to intelligence experts and a former national security official in Washington.
US officials and Israel intelligence sources believe Imad Mugniyeh, the Lebanese commander of Hezbollah’s overseas operations, has taken charge of plotting Iran’s retaliation against western targets should President George W Bush order a strike on Iranian nuclear sites. [...]
That goes hand in hand with this from Iran focus reporting on the WSJ:
U.S. targets Hezbollah funds
Jay Solomon WSJ
The Bush administration is intensifying efforts to cut off funding to Hezbollah, the Shiite organization the U.S. believes is Iran’s principal vehicle for conducting terrorist attacks globally.
The moves come as counterterrorism officials grow concerned that if the standoff between Washington and Tehran over Iran’s suspected nuclear-weapons program heightens tension between the two sides, that could fuel terrorist strikes against Western targets in Iraq and Afghanistan and other nations where American forces are active.
Many U.S. intelligence officials say they believe Hezbollah could pose a more serious threat than the al Qaeda terrorist network, because of its structured military command and decades of experience.
Hezbollah, which means "Party of God," is a militia and sociopolitical party based in Lebanon with a global following and infrastructure that could allow it to conduct operations in Europe, Latin America and even the U.S., counterterrorism experts say. They note that Tehran has used Hezbollah as a proxy in its conflict with the U.S., as evidenced by the group’s attacks against American and Israeli targets in Saudi Arabia, Lebanon and Argentina over the past three decades.
Washington’s focus on Hezbollah "is at a pretty high level now," says Kevin Brock, the deputy director of the U.S. government’s National Counterterrorism Center. "There are active investigations" going on against the Islamist organization’s global activities, he said.
U.S. counterterrorism officials emphasize that they never ignored Hezbollah’s threat but that a priority was placed on al Qaeda after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.
Hezbollah runs southern Lebanon like an Islamic fiefdom
When you’re talking about Hezbollah, it means you’re talking about Lebanon because southern Lebanon is their home base, and attacking Israel is one of their daily tenets. The pressure on Syria to withdraw from Lebanon has resulted in UN calls and resolutions to disarm Hezbollah with little result..
UN urges Lebanon to disband Hezbollah, set borders
By Reuters via haaretz April 21st, 2006
UNITED NATIONS – The United Nations has urged Lebanon to set its borders with Syria and disband the Iranian and Syrian-backed Hezbollah militia so it can be master of its own nation – a call Hezbollah immediately rejected yesterday.
In turn, Syria should take up Beirut’s offer of establishing diplomatic relations as well as demarcating the entire 250-kilometre boundary between the two countries, UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan said in a report released late on Tuesday. [...]
Meanwhile there was also this from Debka, on the resurgence of other armed militias in Lebanon, to combat the well armed Shiite Hezbollah. Who despite Israel’s UN approved withdrawal, Syria’s withdrawal and the supposed takeover of Lebanon by.. Lebanon, have still not been confronted by the Lebanese army. The result according to Debka is a return to Syrian hegemony, and sectarian violence.
Same old scapegoat
It is all tied together, and how is Lebanon dealing with these realities brewing like a category 5 on its shores? How else, total denial and blaming Israel.
A Dangerous Dance: Lebanon’s P.M. rips Israel and criticizes Syria.
By Lally Weymouth Newsweek International
May 1, 2006 issue – Lebanon’s new prime minister, Fuad Siniora, visited President Bush last week to appeal for support. Lebanon is struggling to emerge as a democratic country-free from Syria’s grip. Yet Damascus still wields vast influence over the affairs of its weaker neighbor, in part through a potent network of intelligence agents. NEWSWEEK’s Lally Weymouth spoke with Siniora in New York last week. Excerpts: [...]
Q: WEYMOUTH: What did you request from President Bush?
SINIORA: I came to ask President Bush three specific things. One is to empower the Lebanese government politically. The most important point is to help Lebanon achieve the full integrity of all its territories and [to achieve] the withdrawal of Israel from the remaining parts of Lebanon which are still occupied, the Sheba Farms.
Q: According to the U.N. secretary-general and the Security Council, Israel fully withdrew from Lebanon in 2000; Sheba Farms was [considered] Israeli-occupied Syrian land.
Sheba Farms is Lebanese. The Syrians say verbally that it is Lebanese. [But] they don’t provide the necessary documentation to the United Nations.
Q: So your No. 1 aim is to get Israel out of Sheba Farms. What’s No. 2?
No. 2 is to [enhance] the capabilities of Lebanon’s internal security forces and its Army, by providing equipment and training. [...]
Q: Who can disarm Hizbullah as required by the U.N. resolution?
If the U.S. and friendly countries help us achieve the withdrawal of Israel from Sheba Farms, this would make it possible for the Lebanese forces to be the sole owner of weapons and arms in the country.
Q: Why would Hizbullah give up their weapons? Didn’t they threaten you and tell you not to come here?
They didn’t threaten me, though some of them said I should not come.
Q: But Hizbullah has strong ties to Iran, as the recent U.N. report points out. It says that arms came to Hizbullah via Syria during the last six months.
It [records] one incident in which 12 trucks were smuggled into Lebanon for Hizbullah from Syria.
Q: Is it Syria’s President Assad who would have to disband Hizbullah?
Assad will play an effective role in this regard. … Things in Lebanon cannot happen by mere force [but] through dialogue and achieving the objectives that were set by Hizbullah. Hizbullah has several objectives that I subscribe to: release the [Lebanese] detainees; ask the Israelis to provide us with maps of the land mines that they planted in Lebanon, and stop the aerial and sea violations of our airspace and waters.
Q: Would you talk to Israel directly about this?
No. We do not have any diplomatic relations with Israel.
Q: Why don’t you normalize relations with Israel?
We will upon the finalization of the peace process.
Q: Didn’t Hizbullah kidnap three Israeli soldiers in 2000?
Didn’t Israel kill tens of thousands of civilians?
Q: Israel withdrew from Lebanon.
Israel must hand over the Sheba Farms. Then Hizbullah will be in position to hand over arms to the government.
Q: How strong is Syria’s influence in Lebanon today?
Syria has its men and people in the country: supporters, some politicians and quite a number of Syrian intelligence agents. They are effective. [...]
Take me to your leaders..
While it is abundantly clear the Lebanese PM’s problems all stem from Hezbollah (Iran) and Syria, he spends the bulk of his time blaming Israel and the absurd Sheba Farms area for all his troubles, typical Arab leadership which has led the Arabs absolutely nowhere now this past century.. Total denial of reality! Is it because he lives in fear for his life from the peaceful seeking Muslim Terrorists running their own southern mini state within Lebanon?
What, Me Worry? - Alfred E. Neuman
My friend, when the terrorist organization nestled comfortably in your country causes sectarian violence to re-explode, when they turn the eye of the USA towards Lebanon’s finances as it now has, when someone is killed in Israel by a Hezbollah rocket or inspired martyr, or if arms and support is flowing and terrorism is the result..
You will have much more to worry about than the 2 kilometre wide Shebaa Farms.
Lebanon struggling to independence, yet seemingly unable to make a single independent decision without first consulting Iran, Syria, or Hezbollah first. I’d advise the Lebanese to seek cover now, sadly this one is going to pop, it’s only a matter of time.
The crisis is Hezbollah but the puppet answers Israel
[tags]Lebanon, Israel, US, Syria, Hezbollah, Iran, Terrorism[/tags]
Update: Some additional Lebanese perspective at The Beirut Spring