Lebanon is a country that is unable to govern itselfAug 16th, 2010 | By Elias Bejjani | Category: Editorial, Op Ed
The current explosive situation in Lebanon is sad, unfortunate and very dangerous. Meanwhile, the Lebanese people are marginalized and exposed to all kinds of terrorism, oppression, poverty, persecution, foreign interferences and fear. The Lebanese government is just a shadow and a fancy tag with no actual content, backbone or teeth. It holds no power or authority and has no free say in any matter at all due to the fact that Hezbollah and Syria fully control its decision-making process.
Hezbollah, the Iranian-armed proxy, controls by force, money and intimidation, the whole country and is taking both its people and its government hostage. Hezbollah, which is merely an Iranian army stationed in Lebanon, is dragging the country and its people, as well as the whole Middle East, into a state of havoc.
It is worth mentioning that Hezbollah and its affiliates have planned or already carried out a lengthy series of terrorist attacks against the United States, Israel, Kuwait, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Arabian Gulf countries, Iraq, Yemen, Turkey, and other Arabic and Western targets. These attacks include: a series of kidnappings of Westerners in Lebanon, including several Americans, in the 1980s; the suicide truck bombings that killed more than two hundred U.S. Marines at their barracks in Beirut, Lebanon, in 1983; the 1985 hijacking of TWA flight 847, which featured the famous footage of the plane’s pilot leaning out of the cockpit with a gun to his head; two major 1990’s attacks on Jewish targets in Argentina — the 1992 bombing of the Israeli Embassy (killing 29 people) and the 1994 bombing of a Jewish community center (killing 95 people); and a July 2006 raid on a border post in northern Israel in which two Israeli soldiers were taken captive. The abductions sparked the 2006 Hezbollah-Israeli war.
It is strongly believed that Hezbollah in 2005 was behind the killing of Lebanon’s Prime Minister, Rafiq Hariri, along with 22 others in downtown Beirut. Hezbollah’s General Secretary, Hassan Nasrallah, has recently been threatening to topple the Lebanese government by force and militarily invade Lebanese Sunni and Christian regions in case the Special Tribunal for Lebanon, which is investigating the Hariri assassination, indicts any of his men.
The West and the moderate Arab countries as well as neighboring Israel have an obligation to step in and offset the balance militarily. It is not a secret that the Syria which occupied Lebanon for almost 29 years (1976 – 2005) with an iron fist, has been, since at least 1990, viciously Syrianizing all of Lebanon’s institutions, especially the armed forces, media, cabinet and parliament.
In addition, Syria unlawfully granted Lebanese citizenship to more than half a million individuals in 1994 causing a serious negative effect on the country’s very delicate demographics.
In 2005, when Syria was forced to leave and end its armed occupation in accordance with U.N. Resolution 1559, in the aftermath of the assassination of PM Rafiq Hariri, Hezbollah, the Syrian-Iranian armed proxy, took over the job. Since then Hezbollah has been aggressively instigating an ongoing process of devouring the country, and now fully controls Lebanon and all its institutions.
What is definite is that the Lebanese people alone are no longer able to reverse the Syrianization and Hezbollahization of their country. They need Western military intervention under the U.N. umbrella.
The feasible solution would be via a new U.N. resolution by which the U.N. troops stationed in south Lebanon (in accordance with UN Resolution 1701) will be given the upper hand not only in the southern border region with Israel, but throughout all of Lebanon and especially on the Lebanese-Syrian border, with an eye to stopping the ongoing massive Syrian and Iranian transport of weapons and men to Hezbollah and to the other Lebanese and Palestinian armed groups. The Lebanese army needs to be put under the U.N. troops’ command and Lebanon needs to be declared by the U.N. a country that is unable to govern itself. I personally have called for such a solution in one of my recent editorials.
There is no doubt that losing Lebanon to the Axis of Evil means losing the whole Middle East and will gradually result in the toppling of all the so-called moderate Arab regimes. Lebanon has been, for thousands of years, a pivotal crossroads for the whole Middle East, and history tells us that whoever controls Lebanon will control the whole region. The question is whether the West will remain idle and leave Iran and Syria to fully control Lebanon and, accordingly, the whole Middle East.
In fact, the moderate Arab countries, Israel and the West will gain greater benefits than even Lebanon and the Lebanese people by helping Lebanon to be freed from the Axis of Evil.
No one should fool himself and say, “let the Lebanese solve their own problems”, or “we tried to help them but they did not help themselves.” No, not at all, because the Lebanese, regardless of all the hardships they have faced under the Stalinist Syrian occupation, fought bravely for peace, independence and freedom more than any other people in the Middle East.
In conclusion, leaving Lebanon to fall prey to the Middle East’s Axis of Evil (Syria, Iran, Hezbollah, Hamas), will not only hurt the Lebanese people, destroy their freedom, their multicultural and democratic system, and essentially enslave them, but will also destabilize the whole Middle East and threaten peace and democracy all over the world.
Elias Bejjani, human rights activist, journalist and political commentator, is spokesman for the Canadian Lebanese Human Rights Federation (CLHRF) and Media Chairman for the Canadian Lebanese Coordinating Council (LCCC). You may reach him by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit his websites at www.10452lccc.com and www.clhrf.com.