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Hezbollah's Plan to Undermine Lebanon By: Dr. Joseph Hitti
FrontPageMagazine.com | Tuesday, November 29, 2005


For three decades, terrorist groups have exploited supposed “external threats” in order to dominate and exploit the peaceful people of Lebanon. To get an idea of the cyclical nature of the Lebanese crisis, just pick up a Lebanese newspaper published 30 years ago and read the headline from southern Lebanon. Then, fast-forward to 2005, and read the headline from southern Lebanon in the same newspaper, and you will see that the basic “formula” for the terrorists’ endless war remains the same:

1. Armed elements armed and financed by foreign parties attack northern Israeli villages for the objective of “liberating” “Arab” land that may or may not be occupied.

2. Israel discourages this by retaliating with far greater force than the original attack, destroying Lebanese villages and infrastructure. Dozens and occasionally hundreds of Lebanese villagers in the south are killed or injured.

3. The United Nations condemns the violence (with or without a resolution), and the Arab “brothers” of Lebanon condemn Israel for violating Lebanese sovereignty.

4. The Lebanese government – cognizant of the fact that it is itself violating international law by allowing freelance “resistance” militias to attack a neighboring country and abdicating control over its own borders – refuses or is unable to stop the charade. Instead, it resorts to Arab nationalist slogans of “liberation” from some “enemy” who has some vague “ambitions” over the country, and with whom it categorically refuses to even contemplate negotiating border issues (Shebaa), which were created by a “brotherly” Arab country and not by the “enemy.”

The four-step mechanism described above has been the staple formula for the 30-year long destabilization of Lebanon by its supposed “friends” and “brothers.” And we, the Lebanese people, continue to fall for it. Successive governments from Karame, to Solh, to Hoss, to Hariri and Siniora have hidden behind foreign (PLO) and domestic (Hezbollah) militias. Considering that a horde of “Arabs” ranging from Palestinians, Jordanians, Egyptians, Qataris, Tunisians, and Mauritanians have all established ties with the “enemy” to one degree or another. Why is Lebanon – arguably the smallest and weakest Arab country, virtually annihilated by 30 years of this masquerade – so asinine in its determination and persistence to sacrifice itself and its interests, when all the other Arabs say there is really nothing left to liberate?

  

What makes this masochistic behavior so bewildering is that there is one major difference today in 2005 than in times past: now there are no Arab pressures or boycotts of Lebanon to force it to play the role of the village idiot. There are no occupations: The Israelis have left (unless you still want to believe the Shebaa lie); the Syrians have left; the entire world has finally realized what the charade in the south is really about and has issued resolution after resolution to put an end to this outrage. Even the Palestinian government has sent emissaries to Beirut to negotiate the disarming of the camps in accordance with Resolution 1559.

 

So why is the Siniora government in 2005 continue to regurgitate the very same asinine arguments that the Karame government was blathering in 1973? Of course, Siniora claims the mantle of “anti-Syrian” and “liberator,” even as he and his former boss Rafik Harriri (who is now dubbed a martyr) worked at the behest of the Syrian occupation for 15 years before he was killed by his own masters for daring to imagine life in Lebanon without the Syrians – truly a first among Lebanon's Sunni Prime Ministers, excepting of course the Independence hero Riyad El-Solh.

 

When the Lebanese people complain about this irrational and self-destructive policy, they are immediately overwhelmed by cries of “treason” to the Arab cause, and by claims that “resistance” is a natural right, even though there is nothing to liberate.

 

…Except the Lebanese people, from the shackles of feudalism, the enslavement of religion (church and mosque), the tribal mindset that makes Lebanese vote on the basis of genetics rather than economics, the anachronistically patriarchal structure of Lebanese society that grants citizenship to a child born of a Lebanese father but not to one born of a Lebanese mother, the abject neglect of the potential of women to contribute to Lebanese society, the continued rape of our environment, etc. There is a dire need to “liberate” the Lebanese refugees and displaced by the 30-year war, including those who remain inside the country and cannot return to their villages and towns, those who are refugees in Israel, those who continue to live in forced exile by a Syrian-style repressive brand of Lebanese justice (Etienne Sacre and the Guardians of the Cedars, and many others, against whom there are standing arrest warrants for having fought against the Syrian occupation), and all of us willing exiles who want to, but cannot, return for a myriad of reasons. The list of “occupations” that are in dire need of liberation is long indeed, but it is not from the “enemy” our “brothers” so often hold up to us.

 

The focus on the Shebaa farms and Hezbollah’s other hallucinations are legacies of a past. It is treason itself to hold the country hostage to this moribund ideology that wants to establish in Lebanon an Islamic State modeled on the Iranian regime. Otherwise, what is Hezbollah’s raison d’etre? What purpose will Hezbollah serve once the pretext of “liberation” is removed? What purpose will Hezbollah serve once the legitimate government of Lebanon sends its regular army and its social services back to southern Lebanon, from which it was evicted by Hezbollah? Take the “occupation” card from the hands of Hezbollah, and it becomes a fanatic Islamic fundamentalist militia whose goal is to create an Islamic Republic in Lebanon. Go a step further: take away from Hezbollah their dream of an Islamic State in Lebanon, take away their exploitation of the Palestinian cause to achieve that purpose, and take away their hypocritical pretense of providing social services in the south of the country (when they deny the true provider of those services, the Lebanese government, access to the south), and Hezbollah evaporates.

 

As the noose tightens around Damascus, another noose is rapidly forming around the neck of Nasrallah and Hezbollah. But the solution for the people of Lebanon on the more important issues confronting them – their livelihoods, economy, infrastructure and social services, women’s rights, access to political power, the environment, reform of government corruption – resides in the Lebanese people making the right choices at elections and throwing in the trash bin of history the feudal and tribal leaders they continue to bring to power, who continue to keep them chained to antiquated and obsolescent traditions. We need to extinguish the belief all our problems are caused by a foreign “enemy,” which can only be vanquished by Arab “friends.” We need leaders whose claim to leadership is not their fathers’ chromosomes or their relation to former traitors and collaborators. Nothing short of a revolution in the hearts and minds of the Lebanese people will take Lebanon out of the cesspool in which it has been lying for decades. Only then will their government truly change, and the solutions to their problems will become clear.

 

Table Illustrating the Cyclical Nature of Hezbollah’s Undermining of Lebanon

 

Lebanon 

Circa 1974

2005

Armed elements

Palestinian movements / PLO

Hezbollah

Lebanese govt.

Karame

Siniora

Arab pressures

Syria, Egypt, Libya, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Arab League

None

Funding for the “Resistance”

Syria, Egypt, Libya, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait

Known: Iran and Syria

“Foreign” plot

Contain the fire in Lebanon. Make Lebanon a substitute homeland for Palestinians

Put fire out in Lebanon. Destabilize Arab regimes to emasculate Islamic fundamentalism and usher democracy

Foreign Occupation

None

None

“Resistance” pretext

Liberating Palestine

Liberating Palestine, the Golan Heights, and the Shebaa Farms

International community

Condemn, issue resolutions, send UN observers

Condemn, issue resolutions, send UN observers

The Lebanese people

Sheep herded to the slaughter

?

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