Sheba Farms irrelevant to Hezbollah disarming in Lebanon

I took some exception two weeks ago to Lebanon’s new PM Siniora making demands of Israel instead of tackling reality in Lebanon.

He has since taken the message to Tony Blair in the UK as well that Israel must vacate the Syrian Sheba farms area before Hezbollah will be disarmed. Siniora’s typical tactic is a disservice to Lebanon and a needless slander on Israel, nor does it advance the goal of relinquishing Hezbollah’s hold on Lebanon.

Wallid Jumblatt, the Druze leader and politician for Lebanese independence from Syria has some blunt words in an excellent Aaron Klein WND article:

The Lebanese Hezbollah militia, backed by Syria and Iran, must stop using land disputes surrounding the Shebaa Farms as a pretext to continue arming itself and should cease bringing Israeli-Palestinian issues into play in the Lebanese arena, Druze leader Walid Jumblatt said in an interview.

"The question of the Shebaa Farms was invented by Syria and Iran using Hezbollah as a pretense to have an armed presence in Lebanon. This must end," Jumblatt told WND.

Jumblatt is the head of Lebanon’s Progressive Socialist Party and is largely considered the most prominent anti-Syrian Lebanese politician. He said he supports dialogue with Syria and the international community to change the status of the Shebaa Farms from Syrian to Lebanese territory and to work toward an ultimate Israeli withdrawal from the land. [...]

"There should be dialogue first with Syria on the issue. But the question of Hezbollah shouldn’t be tied to the Shebaa Farms. They must disarm now. No more excuses. No bringing other issues, like the conflict with Israel, into Lebanon," said Jumblatt.

Israeli security officials say Hezbollah is unlikely to disarm even if the Shabaa Farms is vacated.

"[Hezbollah is] in Lebanon to do Syria and Iran’s bidding and to aid Palestinian terror groups," an official said.

Hezbollah is suspected of passing money to Islamic Jihad and the Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades in the West Bank to finance terror operations, including recent suicide attacks. [...]

Jumblatt’s practical reasoned reality based approach is leaps and bounds more effective at possibly seeing the Sheba Farms in the future, disarming Hezbollah, delineating a border with Syria, and eventually possibly signing a peace treaty with Israel. Jumblatt’s approach also brings Lebanon in harmony with UN resolutions, as opposed to trying to re-write them as Siniora is attempting.

I’m left wondering what kind of general support Jumblatt can muster in Lebanon, and whether it is enough to draw that country out of the morass it is in. One thing is clear, Hezbollah will not disarm willingly so Siniora’s approach brings meaningless hardship and complexity to the picture with little result, if anything it expands an internal Lebanese conflict to Israel which is the last thing Lebanon needs..

[tags]Lebanon, Hezbollah, Syria, Sheba Farms[/tags]