Free Patriotic Movement, Hezbollah, Israel, Lebanon, March 14, Syria

Wikileaks Cables on the July 2006 War


Apologies for the brief absence, folks. Things have been busy, but not busy enough to keep me from devouring all of the Wikileaks cables about the July 2006 War that al-Akhbar has been publishing. Mesmerizing stuff…

For English speakers who may have trouble navigating the newspaper’s website, I’ve posted links to all of the relevant cables below along with their dates, subject headings, and the occasional excerpt. If I have some time later this week, I’ll share some thoughts about the content of the cables.

If anyone’s interested and in the area, I’ll be giving a talk at the University of Oklahoma two weeks from today, where I look forward to seeing my friends Yaron Ayalon (an Ottoman historian who teaches there) and Joshua Landis, author of the indispensable Syria Comment (which is a must-read these days, given all that’s going on in Syria).

Without further ado, I give you…

AL-AKHBAR’S WIKILEAKS CABLES

06BEIRUT2351 (July 13, 2006) | Subject: INITIAL REACTION TO NASRALLAH’S SPEECH JUSTIFYING HIZBALLAH’S ABDUCTION OF IDF SOLDIERS

06BEIRUT2353 (July 13, 2006) |Subject: LEBANESE PM SINIORA: “WE NEED HELP.”

06BEIRUT2390 (July 14, 2006) |Subject: HIZBALLAH’S RECKLESSNESS SPLITS AOUN’S ADVISORS

“Aounist advisor MP Ibrahim Kanaan expressed frustration and deep concern over the present course of events in Lebanon and said he has advised his party leader General Michel Aoun to put distance between himself and Hassan Nasrallah. Kanaan is convinced that Hizballah, with “its extreme overconfidence,” will soon lose control over the rapidly escalating hostilities. In his view, the resulting loss of life and stability will produce a severe backlash in Christian, and possibly Sunni, communities that could destroy Aoun’s Free Patriotic Movement, since it is currently viewed as a Hizballah ally. Kanaan suggested, however, that the current crisis may offer an opportunity for Aoun and PM Siniora to form a pro-reform “partnership.” Senior Aoun advisor Gebran Bassil, on the other hand, defended Hizballah’s actions and said Siniora’s government was merely reaping the whirlwind created by its passivity and refusal to share power. Moderate Aounist MP Farid el-Khazen, meanwhile, split the difference: strongly criticizing Hizballah’s duplicity and recklessness, while recommending aloofness from the star-crossed Siniora government.”

“In a July 13 discussion with poloff, MP Ibrahim Kanaan, who is frequently used as an intermediary and spokesperson by Free Patriotic Movement (FPM) leader Michel Aoun, said that FPM’s association with Hizballah has been a mistake. Declaring that Michel Aoun did not have the slightest idea that Hizballah was planning such a provocative act, Kanaan professed deep concern that Hizballah was now effectively steering the ship of state. When asked if he thought Hassan Nasrallah was acting like a Minister of Defense, Kanaan retorted, “no, no, much more than that.”

“Kanaan half-heartedly defended the troublesome February 6 compact between the FPM and Hizballah, saying it originally held the promise of bringing Hizballah into Lebanon’s political mainstream. But he conceded that the previous day’s “reckless” ambush in Israeli territory is threatening to completely undo Lebanon’s struggling democracy and threatens to deliver the country back into the tender mercies of Syria.”

*

06BEIRUT2403 (July 17, 2006) | Subject: LARSEN TO PROPOSE HANDOVER OF ISRAELI SOLIDIERS TO GOL…

“Mid-way through the meeting three visitors arrived at Larsen’s room unannounced. Druze leader Walid Jumblatt, Minister of Telecommunications Marwan Hamadeh, and Minister of Information Ghazi Aridi entered the room in good humor and indulged in generous orders to room service with the others present. The three Lebanese politicians reacted positively to Larsen’s proposal to call for a transfer of the Israeli soldiers to the GOL…”

“Over a glass of red wine, a large bottle of vodka (the quality of which sparked a long exchange between Jumblatt and the startled room service waiter), and three bottles of Corona beer, Jumblatt gave a briefing on the thinking of the March 14 coalition which had met that evening. Jumblatt noted the heavy destruction of Lebanese infrastructure but bemoaned the irony that Hizballah’s military infrastructure had not been seriously touched. Jumblatt explained that although March 14 must call for a cease-fire in public, it is hoping that Israel continues its military operations until it destroys Hizballah’s military capabilities.”

“Responding to Jumblatt’s complain that Israel is hitting targets that hurt the GOL while leaving Hizballah strategically strong, the Ambassador asked Jumblatt what Israel should do to cause serious damage to Hizballah. Jumblatt replied that Israel is still in the mindset of fighting classic battles with Arab armies. “You can’t win this kind of war with zero dead,” he said. Jumblatt finally said what he meant; Israel will have to invade southern Lebanon. Israel must be careful to avoid massacres, but it should clear Hizballah out of southern Lebanon. Then the LAF can replace the IDF once a cease-fire is reached. A defeat of Hizballah by Israel would be a defeat of Syrian and Iranian influence in Lebanon, Hamadeh added. For emphasis, Jumblatt said that the only two outcomes are total defeat or total success for Hizballah.”

*

06BEIRUT2413 (July 18, 2006) | Subject: [FRENCH AMBASSADOR] INCENSED BY ISRAELI TARGETING OF LAF…

06BEIRUT2437 (July 21, 2006) | Subject: MINISTER MOUAWAD URGES HUMANITARIAN RESPONSE…

“In closing, Minister Mouawad re-emphasized two issues: the urgent necessity of starting humanitarian operations now and the advantages of using that effort to strengthen the standing of the GOL with the Lebanese people. She stated the first step is the immediate establishment of
humanitarian corridors inside Lebanon to the villages of the south. Finally, she urged that USG support and protect three critical figures: Fouad Siniora, Walid Jumblatt, and unexpectedly, Nabih Berri — who in her opinion may be the best available Shia alternative to Nasrallah.”

*

06BEIRUT2443 (July 23, 2006) | Subject: AMINE GEMAYEL SAYS CEASE-FIRE SHOULD SECURE BORDER FIRST…

“Gemayel said Aoun had cooperated with Mossad through the duration of Lebanon’s civil war, and said he allied himself with Syria and Hizballah now because he believed they offered him the best chance at winning his long coveted seat in Baabda Palace.”

*

06BEIRUT2471 (July 25, 2006) | Subject: SAMIR JA`JA` SUPPORTS PROPOSED PATH TO CEASEFIRE…WITH A SUGGESTION

06BEIRUT2490 (July 29, 2006) Subject: MARWAN HAMADEH DISCUSSES CEASE-FIRE POSSIBILITIES

“On the night of July 28, the Ambassador and econoff met with Minister of Telecommunications Marwan Hamadeh at his apartment. “An Nahar” General Manager Ghassan Tueni was also there for much of the meeting, his main contribution filling us in with breaking press reports (almost all of which later proved to be erroneous).” [QN: That explains Naharnet...]

*

06BEIRUT2504 (August 1, 2006) Subject: SINIORA BELIEVES HE HAS THE CONFIDENCE OF HIS PEOPLE…

“When asked about his inexplicable confidence that Hizballah would either move north of the Litani with its heavy weapons, or allow itself to be disarmed by the LAF, Siniora said he wasn’t certain, but his on-going communication with Hizballah through Nabih Berri and other Shia interlocutors led him to believe they were “considering” and close to such action.”

*

06BEIRUT2508 (August 1, 2006) Subject: AOUN PARROTS PIAF: “JE NE REGRETTE RIEN”

“In an awkward attempt to straddle the fence, Aoun insisted he was not really in an alliance with Hizballah, but then proceeded to tear down the “inconstant” leaders of March 14 — Siniora, Walid Jumblatt, Saad Hariri — who in his view did not deserve the “confidence” of the Lebanese people. The implication (although never stated explicitly) was that Nasrallah is a more trustworthy partner…”

For those who hoped the tragedy of the current crisis might be the catalyst to inject some sanity in Michel Aoun’s relationship with Hizballah, this meeting proved a disappointment. In what was essentially a disjointed, repetitive, and often contradictory performance, Aoun displayed the qualities that engender so much antipathy and distrust among Lebanon’s political class. He rarely admits a mistake or miscalculation and through exquisite twists of logic, always manages to replay his diplomatic/political “triumphs” and interpret other leaders’ efforts as feckless and ill-conceived…We have noticed developing fissures in the FPM movement and strong disagreement with Aoun’s policies in his second-tier of advisors, but Aoun’s lack of movement toward the country’s other pro-reform leaders implies that the post-conflict political scene may be as contentious as it was on July 11. We agree with him that the Shia community in Lebanon cannot be ignored and cannot be made to feel defeat as a community. But, unlike Jumblatt and Hariri, Aoun has not yet awakened to the fact that Nasrallah has used him.”

*

06BEIRUT2511 (August 1, 2006) |Subject: HAMADEH SEES RESOLUTION OF SHEBAA FARMS AS MEANS TO NEUTRALIZE HIZBALLAH IDEOLOGICALLY

“Hamadeh described a significant change in Minister of Defense Elias El-Murr’s demeanor, characterizing him as playing both sides. Hamadeh said that El-Murr believes the Hizballah will “win” in the current conflict and is trying to save himself politically for the post-conflict sorting-out of the political scene here. Hamadeh recounted that Siniora was furious at El-Murr at a recent cabinet meeting for his comments to the media to the effect that, “the 7 points (of Siniora’s paper) do not exist”. Other ostensibly “pro-Syrian” members of the cabinet have been surprisingly quiet, Hamadeh said. Minister of Justice Charles Rizk, an erstwhile ally of President Emile Lahoud, has been, “playing it better than Elias (El-Murr),” offered Hamadeh. Rizk has even been pushing forward the Cabinet’s work on the establishment of an international tribunal to try suspects in the crimes under the purview of Serge Brammertz’s UNIIIC. According to Hamadeh, Rizk has made great progress, appointing “two good judges.” Hamadeh stressed that they should take advantage of Rizk’s openness to work on this issue. For Hamadeh, now is the time to pass a resolution to establish the tribunal, as this would serve to “keep Syria quiet” on the current Lebanese-Israeli conflict as well as further contain the Syrians in the long run.”

*

06BEIRUT2513 (August 1, 2006) | Subject: MP BOUTROS HARB: NASRALLAH CANNOT BECOME REGION’S RAMBO

Quote: “[Harb] recommended that a strong Israeli advance that completely controls the Hizballah strongholds of Maroun El Ras and Bint Jbeil would provide a chance for the U.S. impose a ceasefire while showing that Hizballah has been overpowered… He also stressed that Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri, a reluctant Hizballah ally, will become the political victim of Hizballah.”

*

06BEIRUT2540 (August 6, 2006) | Subject: JUMBLATT AND HAMADE ON TWO-PHASE SOLUTION

Jumblatt expressed regret that, in his view, Israel failed to assess Hizballah’s operations on the ground. He questioned how Israel was completely taken by surprise on July 12. He concluded that today the tables have turned to Hizballah’s advantage as the organization is founded on a “culture of death.” Hizballah fighters want to die as martyrs and will not hesitate to blow themselves up to kill Israelis. In addition, there is a new generation of Israeli soldiers that are not as driven and motivated as their predecessors. He thinks this was illustrated in the past weeks of fighting and warns that it is dangerous for Israel and the region for this to be revealed.”

*

06BEIRUT2544 (August 7, 2006) | Subject: CHRISTIAN POLITICAL LEADERS SAY SHEBAA IS KEY

“On August 5, A/S Welch and Ambassador Feltman met with Christian leaders from the anti- Syria March 14 movement, including former President Amin Gemayel, his son and Minister of Industry Pierre Gemayel, Dory Chamoun, Carlos Edde, Fares Souaid, George Adwan, and presidential hopefuls Nayla Moawad (Minister of Social Affairs), Nassib Lahoud, and MP Boutros Harb. While claiming to be fully supportive of Prime Minister Siniora’s call for a ceasefire, they are troubled that the current conflict might leave Hizballah in a stronger position within Lebanon than at the beginning. The Lebanese government will need to be in a position of strength to deal with Hizballah once the conflict is over, the leaders argued. To this end, they would support a continuation of the Israeli bombing campaign for a week or two if this were to diminish seriously Hizballah’s strength on the ground.”

“Claiming to reflect PM Siniora’s private thoughts, several of the assembled leaders urged that Hizballah be given a “real pounding” by the Israelis to the point that the group would be “soft enough to listen to reason.” According to Boutros Harb, “if we are convinced that Israel can finish the job, then we can allow a few more weeks,” though the consensus seemed to rest between seven to ten days. If on the other hand Hizballah were to emerge emboldened with a perceived sense of victory, “that would be a disaster.”

*

06BEIRUT2553 (August 8, 2006) | Subject: DEFENSE MINISTER MURR CONFIDENT IN RAPID LAF DEPLOYMENT

“Murr stated clearly that the LAF was prepared to hit back at Hizballah if they attempted to fire at Israel or tried to draw Israeli fire by placing launchers near to LAF positions.”

“In contrast to his earlier dismissals that Israel had significantly harmed Hizballah, Murr claimed that Hizballah had suffered losses of 50 percent of its equipment as well as 400 fighters during the conflict. While he estimates that Hizballah has fired off 3000 of its rockets, he believes that the Syrians were able to resupply Hizballah with 2500 before the Israelis took out the road links.”

*

06TELAVIV3079 (August 8, 2006) | Subject: ISRAEL FM LIVNI SAYS ISRAEL DISAPPROVES OF CURRENT DRAFT OF UN RESOLUTION

06BEIRUT2602 (August 12, 2006) | Subject: SAAD HARIRI WANTS LAHOUD OUT

“According to Hariri, “Nabih Berri is furious with Hizballah.” While Berri will maintain a united Shi’a front for some months following the conflict, Berri will put pressure on Hizballah to keep in line and, ultimately, “Berri’s dream is to finish off Hizballah” and reclaim Amal’s primacy among the Shi’a. Hariri said that Berri had compelled Hizballah to accept the LAF deployment plan, and that this spells “the beginning of the end” for HIzballah.”If we play our cards right,” Hariri added.”

“Asking that his comments be kept close-hold, Hariri whispered that, “We need to remove Lahoud, (LAF commander Michel) Sleiman, and (Head of the G2 army intelligence) George Khoury. They are in bed with Syria. They are in bed with Hizballah.” While Hariri hopes to eventually recruit Nabih Berri’s critical support to achieve this, he asked that international pressure on Iran and Syria continue unabated.”

“On a positive note, Hariri praised with seeming sincerity the performance of PM Fouad Siniora during this crisis.”If I had picked Bahije (Tabbarah, former Minister of Justice) a year ago,” he said, his voice trailing off as he shook his head. We think that this was a tacit acknowledgement, Saad-style, that the strong advice we and the French gave him to pick Siniora over his initial choice of Tabbarah was the right one. But what was encouraging in Saad’s praise for Siniora was the suggestion that the two of them will now be able to cooperate without the internal rivalries and jealousies that had plagued their relationship earlier this year. In general, we think Siniora has done a better job when he hasn’t had to worry about the less experienced but politicaly more powerful Saad second-guessing him. But we also believe that it’s good Saad is home: the image of Saad Hariri staying at the Plaza Athenee in Paris and globe-trotting with an sizable entourage, while hundreds of thousands of Lebanese felt forced to leave their homes, was not good for the future of the March 14 movement.”
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Discussion

84 thoughts on “Wikileaks Cables on the July 2006 War

  1. Thanks for compiling all of these cables!

    Posted by Nasser V | March 21, 2011, 10:36 pm
  2. Great post.
    This only confirms what Hizballah’s been saying during and since the July war.

    Posted by Simon | March 21, 2011, 10:56 pm
  3. But it also shows how much of a menace HA was and still is to the rest of the lebanese that even its allies Aoun and Berri had reservations.
    The Pols who spoke out against HA should not be apologetic, but reinforce their stances.How desperate do you have to be to support the IDF against your own countrymen? This reveals more than anything, that the subject at hand is not the level of backstabbing and deceit in the country but of how hated HA really is.
    Im not buying into that HA was right all along, they are the sacrificing freedom fighters who have a devine aura and those who stood against them are traitors and israeli agents.
    Resistance stops becoming resistance when you turn your weapons inwards.

    Posted by Maverick | March 22, 2011, 1:13 am
  4. We should also not forget that HA is responsible for the eventual killing of some 1500 Lebanese, and the destruction that befell the country as a result of its aggression in 2006.

    Jumblatt looks like a completely different politician while under the effect of the spirit.

    But we know now HA has been lying all along even by the testimony of its so-called allies.

    Posted by anonymous | March 22, 2011, 1:25 am
  5. What an enormous job to go through all of those. What I’ve looked at already confirms that I couldn’t care less about either “March 8″ or “March 14″, the “Jewish state” in multi-communal Palestine, the “Islamic Republic” or the “Islamic Kingdom”.

    What I’m really looking forward to is you next column on what it means for Lebanese politics post al-Assad regime in al Shams, post Saudi tyranny in Arabian Peninsula and post-Khomeinism in Iran. Nothing is surer that in 2 or 3 years from now these governments will be gone – they’ll be replaced by more representative, more accountable and governance systems like in Indonesia, Malaysia, Turkey – and everywhere else bar China & Russia.

    What will it mean for Lebanese politics when we no longer have this trumped-up made-up conflict between the two fundamentalisms of Tehran/al-Shams/Riyad.

    Posted by s al-riachy | March 22, 2011, 4:50 am
  6. Wikileaks material seems to be taken, universally and rather naively, as true by definition. Shouldn’t readers be more guarded, critical, and skeptical? Couldn’t intentional or selective leaks be used to manipulate public opinion? Curious what the great political minds of this forum and its creator think?

    Posted by Honest Patriot | March 22, 2011, 5:40 am
  7. Unless you’re writing a book on the July war or modern Lebanese history, these wikileaks offer very little insight into our future.

    I agree with al Riachy.

    It would be great if QN could get some academics onto here to gain some insight as to what an Assad-less Syria would mean to Syria, the region and Lebanon (Landis?)

    Also, what could an Assad-less Syria and the downfall of the Iranian regime mean for Hezbollah (Thanassis?)

    Posted by R2D2 | March 22, 2011, 5:51 am
  8. After a severe case of indigestion, I was trying to sever myself from any excesses on Lebanese and ME news feedings in general. Oh my oh my, turns out that I started a diet right before Christmas…again? As for the Wikifood served by Al Akhbar and others, well, many hot dishes are intended to be consumed on the spot, and actually few withstand to be reheated. When served cold, like this one, I have trouble swallowing the fat.

    Posted by mj | March 22, 2011, 7:01 am
  9. All these leaks prove beyond a shadow of a doubt that Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah has been absolutely right all along in everything he ever said about the 2006 War.
    It also proves that all these Lebanese and foreign actors mentioned are despicable traitors that should Hang…The UN representative Geer Pederson first among them…as well as Larsen…
    It also proves, unfortunately that Ibrahim Kanaan and Khazen were totally wrong and cowardly in their assessment of the situation in 2006. They might have redeemed themselves slightly since then…., but they will be hurt politically now and in the future….

    Posted by HK | March 22, 2011, 7:02 am
  10. Most these cables are most likely out of context and written with the understanding of a civil servant. Assuming it is correct; it just shows the hate and mistrust against the bearded fraternity.It reinforces the fact that Nassrallah is guided by his own set of rules with no co-ordination with the State.

    The fear of the Lebanese politicians can be read in between the lines or overtly whether it was washed down by “silent sam” or cheap smirnoff!

    Nothing earth shattering. It just gives cult scum like Raad additional fodder to characterize any opposition to W of F as filth.

    Posted by danny | March 22, 2011, 7:18 am
  11. Al Akhbar cannot be trusted in publishing the leaks. They are picking and choosing what they want to promote their ideas.

    I hope wikileaks will publish all the leaks re July 2006 to see what Al Akhbar has decided to select.

    Posted by lebanesepatriot | March 22, 2011, 7:57 am
  12. GK,

    For your consumption.

    http://twitpic.com/4c35if

    They set up tents in downtown Beirut in front of the Grand Serail.

    Posted by R2D2 | March 22, 2011, 8:27 am
  13. Re: A post about developments in Syria… it’s in the works.

    Re: A post about commentary on the Wikileaks stuff… it’s also in the works.

    This is not my day job, ya jame3a!

    Posted by Qifa Nabki | March 22, 2011, 9:03 am
  14. Today, “israel” will be unable to invade Lebanon because of Hizbollah’s strength. The wikileaks show that the Zionists intended to occupy all of Lebanon and were only stopped by the valiant fighters of The Resistance. If not for Hizbollah’s independent army, economy and communications networks, anyone wanting directions in Beirut, you would have to ask in “Hebrew”.

    Posted by dontgetit | March 22, 2011, 10:16 am
  15. From Naharnet:

    A. Raad Calls March 14 Officials ‘Filthy,’ Hints Cabinet Formation Waiting for Regional Developments

    B. Report: Suleiman Reportedly Said No Cabinet Soon Due to Local, Regional Obstacles

    Really? …and the HA cronies always said that foreign powers should not interfere! We have these bozos waiting a command from Syria/Iran?

    What a F’d up country and people!!

    Posted by danny | March 22, 2011, 10:41 am
  16. Danny,

    The fact is HA want a government but Miqati is afraid to form one for two major reasons:
    1) He is afraid that Lebanon will be ostracized by the international community if it is viewed as a “Hezbollah led government”.
    2) Miqati does not want to be prime minister of this government in case the indictments against Hezbollah are strong. If he resigns then, it will look like he is endorsing the STL indictments. If he stays, he will be viewed as a traitor in the Sunni community and lose much support.

    The only way out for Miqati is to get Hariri in the government. But Hariri has called his bluff.

    Posted by AIG | March 22, 2011, 11:01 am
  17. QN, time to monetize your blog?

    Posted by Honest Patriot | March 22, 2011, 11:01 am
  18. dontgetit, I can’t tell if you’re (1) serious or (2) being sarcastic in your posts. Would you advise which it is, 1 or 2?

    Posted by Honest Patriot | March 22, 2011, 11:06 am
  19. Non of the wikileaks is surprising or revealing. Everyone knows that M14 wanted HA to to lose and that WJ likes good vodka.
    What would be entertaining is Iranian embassy version of wikileaks (entertaining but not surprising because, again, everyone knows what HA and M8 think).

    Btw, dontgetit, I really don’t get it ;)

    Posted by IHTDA | March 22, 2011, 11:43 am
  20. HP

    I think dontgetit is being sarcastic. As for the credibility of the cables, I think they’re for real. And I have no reason to believe that Feltman and his people were distorting the messages they were getting from those meetings. Why would they? It wouldn’t have been in US interests to do so.

    I do agree with some of you that what the cables reveal is the extent of hostility among a majority of Lebanese to Hizbullah’s maximalist position. If what the cables suggest is true, then in addition to the Sunnis, Druze, and at least half the Christians (when you count those among the FPM) who were very disturbed by Hizbullah’s calculations in ’06, many of the Shi`a (led by Nabih Berri) were as well.

    It is a testament to Hizbullah’s canniness and the political skills of Nasrallah that they managed to emerge from the war with more political momentum than any of their opponents.

    Posted by Qifa Nabki | March 22, 2011, 11:51 am
  21. AIG
    “The fact is HA want a government”

    I’m not sure that HA wants one. At least not before the STL indictments are out. Remember that the resignation press conference singled out the STL as the reason for the resignations.

    I might be proven wrong (very soon if the new cabinet is announced soon), but I still believe that there will be no government anytime soon. And, the next government will be in the form of “National Reconcilliation” after the indictments are issued. In other words, GK your wish (and mine) for the non-repeat of the mistake of a national unity government will remain a “wish”

    Posted by IHTDA | March 22, 2011, 12:00 pm
  22. AIG,

    I beg to differ regarding the cabinet formation. I agree with #25.
    It is much easier to maneuver without having a HA cabinet if the STL indicts prominent “cadres” of the militia. Also, it is NOT HA’s decision. It is Syria’s for the same reason. If they escape indictments; they can squeeze HA for all its worth.
    There are no obstacle left. If it were not for STL the cabinet would have been formed in 2 hours as all the M8 parties (including Slyman) get their orders from Bashar.

    Posted by danny | March 22, 2011, 12:10 pm
  23. Qifa

    What is so maximalist in the position of HA? also the only references “so far” to Berri’s positions came second hand from those trying to sell the US a course of action. I mean Geagea and Hamadeh/ Jumblat. In all the documents and reflections by the US ambassador their was never acknowledgment nor confirmation about Berri’
    s position so let’s refrain from making assumptions.
    As for the the two deputies from FPM let’s not forget the close ties that the General had with the US. Let’s also not forget that at that time there was no alliance between Aoun and the Hizb so why are we surprised that some members of his party expressed concern from about the situation? More should be said about the uncompromising position of Jubran Basil as the document revealed. In spite of all the pressures.

    What the documents reveal, and i have read each and every one of them in Arabic and English, is a deep rooted not mistrust but racism of some Lebanese against the Shi’a. The south for them is not considered a part of the country and whatever happens to it is not their problem. They knowingly and intentionally plotted and instigated against their own country. This goes beyond treason and beyond pardon.
    This is what requires a tribunal not the assassination of the master thief.

    Posted by elsheikh | March 22, 2011, 2:10 pm
  24. Just over two months ago I judged Wikileaks to be much ado about nothing and I still do. Leaks are important and are to be even encouraged when they reveal an abuse of power or a conspiracy to cover up a criminal misconduct. Under all other circumstances what we have seen and heard does not rise to this level but is best described as making public a personal evaluation of a personal conversation that was not intended to be made public. These leaks are essentially the fodder of tabloids and gossip magazines, they are simply tittletatting items of he said she said.

    http://rationalrepublic.blogspot.com/2010/12/ikileaks-commotion-is-it-justified.html

    Posted by ghassan karam | March 22, 2011, 2:24 pm
  25. The only one who wants a government is W.J. He just wants to cover his a.. as soon as possible. He said today he should have named Taha instead of Najib. That is very clear.

    Every action HA takes proves it is on suicidal path. I just hope it will not drag the rest of Lebanon along. HNA’s latest speech may result in some or all Lebanese being driven out of the Gulf. Also, a spokesman for the Syrian opposition (Maamoun al-Homsi) claimed today that HA sent 3000 of its thugs to help the Syrian security thugs in confronting the recent demonstrations. There were even more demonstrations in Der’a today.

    Posted by anonymous | March 22, 2011, 2:28 pm
  26. GK #28.

    I second that. This Wikileaks has devolved into frivolous conversations, and I think the fact that newspapers like Akhbar are going on and on about them is just a reflection of their well..

    QN: #24

    There is no question of canniness or lack thereof. The Israel question is any politician’s weak point in the Arab world.

    Big picture. Who cares what Aoun, his people, Berri, his people etc. secretly think about HN or HA? I mean really.

    Politicians need to grow some balls. And argue on principle. But I suppose that violates the cardinal principle of being a “good” politician.

    So what’s left is people from all walks of life supporting this position or that position, but where are there principles?

    A string of high profile assassinations have taken place. You have a political organisation that for all intents and purposes has hijacked politics. That’s the story. Anything above and beyond that is banter for people to burn free time with.

    Posted by Gabriel | March 22, 2011, 2:41 pm
  27. 28 GK

    So, Lebanese ministers and deputies wishing that Israel could extend its military operations on Lebanese soil is simply “tittle-tattling items of he said she said”? A Lebanese minister (of Defense no less) advising Israelis and Americans on what to bomb and what not to bomb, Walid Jumblat imploring the IDF to engage in a ground invasion of the South of Lebanon (because an areal assault is not sufficient in his view), that’s mere “fodder of tabloids and gossip magazines” to you? What nonsense. In any real country (which Lebanon is most definitely not), these officials would be put on trial for treason and collaboration with the enemy. Keep singing your “respect the constitution” leitmotiv. It reeks of hypocrisy from where I stand.

    Posted by Guillaume en Egypte | March 22, 2011, 2:48 pm
  28. I don’t understand all the questioning being thrown my way. All reasonable people understand the expansionist aggression that motivates the “israelis” and the Zionist intention to add Lebanon to their occupation empire. People who want to subject The Resistance to the “rule of law” are wittingly or unwittingly agents of the occupation and traitors to unity. For Lebanon to be free, it needs armed fighters loyal to the people who are not afraid to safeguard Lebanon’s political independence.

    Posted by dontgetit | March 22, 2011, 2:55 pm
  29. dontgetit #31,
    For Lebanon to be free then it must be occupied. To save Lebanon we have to destroy it. (:-))

    Posted by ghassan karam | March 22, 2011, 3:31 pm
  30. Un coup de maître de la CIA
    Les opérations psychologiques (OPSPSY) sont les techniques utilisées par les forces militaires et policières à influencer un public, l’objectif des émotions, des motifs, le raisonnement objectif, et le comportement. Les publics cibles peuvent être des gouvernements, des organisations, des groupes et individus, et la confusion sont utilisés pour induire ou renforcer des attitudes et des comportements favorables à leurs objectifs. Ils sont parfois combinés avec des opérations drapeau noir ou faux.
    Ce concept a été utilisé par des institutions militaires à travers l’histoire, le mot est couramment utilisé par les gouvernements, comme les États-Unis, vous ne voulez pas utiliser le terme de propagande, ce serait gâcher son image. Le mot propagande a des connotations très négatives, et de l’appeler opérations psychologiques au lieu d’une autre forme, des méthodes plus sophistiquées de manipulation psychologique sont précisément constituée par la terminologie. Cet euphémisme pour le contrôle de l’esprit. Grâce à des techniques psychologiques pour manipuler persuader beaucoup de soutien aux gens quelque chose qu’elle n’a pas l’habitude de soutien.

    Posted by Justicia Divina | March 22, 2011, 3:52 pm
  31. ربة معلم من وكالة المخابرات المركزية
    العمليات النفسية (الحرب النفسية) هي التقنيات المستخدمة من قبل قوات الجيش والشرطة للتأثير على الجمهور ، والهدف من العواطف والدوافع والأسباب الموضوعية ، والسلوك. ويمكن أن يكون الجمهور المستهدف الحكومات والمنظمات والمجموعات والأفراد، وتستخدم للحث على الارتباك أو تعزيز المواقف والسلوك مواتية لتحقيق أهدافهم. أحيانا يتم الجمع بين هذه العمليات مع راية سوداء أو كاذبة.
    وقد استخدم هذا المفهوم من قبل المؤسسات العسكرية على مر التاريخ، ويشيع استخدام لفظة من جانب الحكومات ، مثل الولايات المتحدة ، وكنت لا تريد استخدام الدعاية الأجل، التي من شأنها أن تفسد صورته. الدعاية كلمة له دلالات سلبية جدا ، واصفا اياه بانه العمليات النفسية بدلا من شكل آخر، أدرجت بدقة أساليب أكثر تطورا من التلاعب النفسي من المصطلحات. هذا كناية عن السيطرة على العقل. باستخدام تقنيات نفسية لمعالجة اقناع الكثير من الناس شيئا دعم أنها لا تدعم عادة.

    Posted by Justicia Divina | March 22, 2011, 3:54 pm
  32. Una jugada maestra de la CIA
    Operaciones psicológicas, (PSYOP), son las técnicas usadas por las fuerzas de los militares y de la policía para influenciar a una audiencia, blanco de emociones, motivos, razonamiento objetivos, y comportamientos. Las audiencias del blanco pueden ser gobiernos, organizaciones, grupos, e individuos, y se utilizan para inducir confusiones, o reforzar las actitudes y los comportamientos favorables a sus objetivos. Éstos se combinan a veces con operaciones negras o bandera falsa.
    Este concepto ha sido utilizado por las instituciones militares a través de la historia, La palabra es de uso general por gobiernos, tales como Estados Unidos, que no desea utilizar el término propaganda, que estropearía su imagen. La propaganda de la palabra tiene connotaciones muy negativas, y llamándola operaciones psicológicas en lugar de otra forma, métodos más sofisticados de manipulación psicológica son incorporados exactamente por la terminología. Este eufemismo para el control de la mente. Usando técnicas psicológicas para persuadir manipular a una gran cantidad de gente, apoyar algo que ella no apoyaría normalmente.

    Posted by Justicia Divina | March 22, 2011, 3:55 pm
  33. ElSheikh,
    “They knowingly and intentionally plotted and instigated against their own country. This goes beyond treason and beyond pardon.”

    If they didnt give a sh*&% about the south and its people, they wouldnt have accepted them in their villages,towns,homes etc during 2006 providing food,shelter etc.
    The Mountains provided a refuge for a large bulk of southerners during the 2006 war while its chieftain (W.J)similtaneously wished for HA’s annhilation. This just proves that there is no quarrel with the Shia or the southerners but a real antagonistic view of HA for being a menace in the local arena.
    You have to separate the spirit of “resistance” from the egotistical HA, you have to separate the Shia from HA, no one in their right mind has a problem with Shia or the resistance, but many,many including HA’s own allies have a problem with HA’s reckless, self glorifying and belligerent ways.

    Posted by Maverick | March 22, 2011, 4:58 pm
  34. the Zionist intention to add Lebanon to their occupation empire

    dontgetit,

    I think what we’re waking up to these past few months is that demonizing Israel apparently doesn’t do much to forward everyday arabs.

    IOW, maybe arab despots are really the worst “occupiers”, not Israel.

    Anyway, something to think about…

    Posted by Akbar Palace | March 22, 2011, 6:02 pm
  35. Elsheikh,
    I do not mean to personalize this but general statements similar to yours sometimes cause more damage than you think. I am just one of the thousands that Maverick refers to who offered accomodations for over 15 H/H inspite of the fact that I have been for years opposed to HA ,the war it instigated, what it stands for and its misguided policies.

    Posted by ghassan karam | March 22, 2011, 6:05 pm
  36. El Sheikh,

    The South was pretty much hijacked by Hizballah since 1982.

    I went to the German school in Doha and remember going to the sandy beaches in the south in 1974-75 as a kid. We loved it as a family.

    It wasn’t us that cut off the South from Lebanon … it was Hizballah that cut us out of the South.

    Posted by R2D2 | March 22, 2011, 6:48 pm
  37. What we need to be clear about is that we cannot associate resistance with such entities as HA, Syria and Iran. These entities do not know what resistance is. They know only how to commit murders.

    There was a need for resistance of some kind in Lebanon sometime ago. Neither HA, nor Syria nor Iran contributed positively to it. At the moment, there is need for a legitimate resistance against HA, Syria and Iran, and those who oppose this legitimate resistance are in fact the traitors of Lebanon.

    Posted by anonymous | March 22, 2011, 9:06 pm
  38. Searchable: http://search.wikileaks.se

    Posted by Zenon | March 22, 2011, 9:17 pm
  39. dear all, you can follow our latest Wiki cables and related articles on Twitter @AlakhbarNews in English and Arabic day by day.. A LOT more to publish!!
    Thank You for your attention

    Posted by Sabah Ayoub | March 22, 2011, 9:22 pm
  40. Thanks Sabah.

    How much more is there, and when will we get to see it?

    Posted by Qifa Nabki | March 22, 2011, 9:59 pm
  41. Elsheikh wrote:

    “Let’s also not forget that at that time there was no alliance between Aoun and the Hizb so why are we surprised that some members of his party expressed concern from about the situation?”

    Actually, the Memorandum of Understanding between the FPM and Hizbullah was signed on February 6, 2006, well before the outbreak of the July War.

    As for your observation regarding racism, etc… I think that this is a very odd way to characterize M14’s attitudes. Yes, they certainly displayed a despicable callousness toward the South, but I’ve never understood why people use the label “racism” in this instance.

    Posted by Qifa Nabki | March 22, 2011, 10:04 pm
  42. QN #17

    We all know this isn’t your day job.

    You got yourself into this mess all on your own … so don’t complain … and keep up the good “job”.

    Posted by R2D2 | March 22, 2011, 10:37 pm
  43. It all boils down to this:

    1. March 14 leaders almost all proved to be traitors to the nation, conspiring with foreign powers to encourage attacks on their own country.

    2. Hezbollah’s claim that its arms are necessary for self-defense has been entirely vindicated.

    Posted by Roland | March 22, 2011, 11:15 pm
  44. It took 2006, 1500 killed and large scale destruction to prove to HNA that his weapons are useless in defending Lebanon, and he has to get out of the south. Since then he has been most active in the streets and alleys of the cities. He could have saved all the losses of 2006 by being reasonable and agreeing to relinquish his weapons in the National dialog from which he ran away and which was his real reason for instigating the 2006 war. It looks like anytime he opposes reason, which is all the time, he ends up paying a price.

    March 14 leaders made many mistakes. Wishing for HA to be destroyed by any power is certainly not one of them. They (March 14) are at least true to their allegiance to Lebanon and the sovereignty of the country unlike HNA and his goons.

    If any one is interested in destroying HA, he/she is welcome to do it anytime and will receive enthusiatic support from the majority of the Lebanese, and hopefully this time fully in the open, provided no damage is inflicted to something other than HA.

    Posted by anonymous | March 22, 2011, 11:49 pm
  45. Racism? What is your definition of racism ?
    One image comes to mind , that of Walid Ido sunbathing while people are being slaughtered in the south. The lebanese are the worst racist people : christian on muslim/sunni on shia/lebanese on syrian/lebanese on palestinian/lebanese on kurd and let’s not forget the racism of the lebanese on their asian/african help.

    Posted by mirheum | March 22, 2011, 11:56 pm
  46. elSheikh, have you ever been to the south? You should visit sometime and see for yourself. I think the two biggest destroyers of the South have been Berri – through his corruption and Hizb/Israel through their constant aggression that prevents any sane person from investing in the area. Oddly enough, the Hizb/Israel relationship is quite symbiotic when one looks at it from 30,000 feet.

    I like Gebran Bassil – I think he has been an effective Minister. But when you use the following descriptor for him “uncompromising position of Jubran Basil” I worry. I think the worst attribute of a politician is to be uncompromising. Unwillingness to compromise only leads to obstruction and/or worse yet violence.

    Let me state very clearly that I do not like/support/trust either of the dominant political coalitions in the country – I have expressed my desire to see them all burn in hell on this and other sites. However, as an objective observer I have only seen obstruction and/or violence from March 8, the former led by GMA and the latter by the Hizb. March 14 can only claim incompetence – they don’t even know how to obstruct.

    Even as M8 claim a desire to form a one-sided cabinet, and we Lebanese urge them to form a one-sided cabinet there is no cabinet to speak of. The refrain comes back. They only know how to obstruct.

    Pity the nation and we fools who choose to live here.

    Posted by Johnny | March 23, 2011, 1:16 am
  47. Roland,

    Number one resulted from the false premise of number two.
    HA does not leave enough wiggle room when it proclaims the well known maxim ” you’re either with us or against us”, echoing the Dubya Neocons.
    I’m against HA’s performance in the local scene,have been since 2005, but I can assure you I’m no traitor.
    Not that I’m justifying the leaders of M14’s opinions in the leaks, but my reaction was, so what? 3/4 of the country wished HA would be taught a lesson……and just to the agent provocateurs of this blog,to be taught a lesson not because HA is made up of Shia, not because it is a symbol of resistance but because the ego of the bully has reached unprecedented levels to the rest of the country’s detriment.

    Posted by Maverick | March 23, 2011, 1:25 am
  48. Really? Wikileaks? Seriously, there are far more important current events unfolding in the region than this outdated non-news.
    Disappointed.

    Posted by Adriano | March 23, 2011, 2:08 am
  49. March14th have utterly failed the test of Leadership in Lebanon and abroad….Wikileaks are but a Teaser….what is known is much worse….

    1. March 14 leaders all proved to be traitors to their nation, conspiring with foreign powers to encourage attacks on their own country….
    2. Hezbollah’s Valiant Resistance and its arms are paramount for self-defense and have been entirely vindicated in every way, not only in 2000, in 2006 as well and still are today, till the dawn of an elusive comprehensive peace….

    A potential leader must have something more than good personal qualities…. He must have an intellectual spark which does not necessarily come from his or her educational qualifications… None of the March14th figureheads…has given evidence of such an intellectual spark…

    Till now, March14th have not demonstrated any leadership qualities by way of ideas and actions…
    March14th ability to understand and logically analyze the complex internal and external problems facing the country is yet to be proved….
    March14th views tend to be very simplistic and do not indicate wide reading and an ability to think deeply….

    A good “leader of the future” must excite the younger generation. March14th doesn’t—not even in their own respective parties….all feudal and decrepit….March14th track record till now—whether in respect of contribution to new ideas or new policies—has been mediocre at best, destructive at least….. Apart from the fact that March14th have come from mostly privileged feudal political families, which have never made any tremendous contribution to the nation, March14th is yet to demonstrate any qualities which compel attention and could make us look upon them as “leaders of the future”….

    It is important to have an objective and balanced debate on this subject devoid of rhetoric, abuses and ideological arguments so that we have a complete picture of March14th before our eyes on the basis of which we can decide whether March14th is fit to lead Lebanon in the difficult years to come…..potential leaders, should not be treated as a sacred cow which has to be accepted by the people without any scrutiny….

    Posted by HK | March 23, 2011, 6:35 am
  50. It strikes me that no comments are made on the these supposed ‘Wikileaks’ and no comments put in question their authenticity.
    As you know, Wikileaks cooperated with some famous newspapers (including the Guardian, Spiegel and NYT) for verification and vetting of the cables before their release. I am not aware of Al-Akhbar being included in the group above, and no mention is made by the newspaper on how it managed to obtain these cables.
    A fact is that if you search the official Wikileaks database, these cables are nowhere to be found (i must admit i did not check all of them, but only a sample, so i stand to be corrected).
    Now, it takes little IT literacy to compile something that looks like a leaked cable, i agree it takes a little more expertise to use the diplomatic jargon, but it’s not at all impossible.
    While i do not think these al-Akhbar cables reveal anything too shocking, i still remain deeply suspicious of the original source of information.
    Does anyone else share this opinion ?

    Posted by Meganoid | March 23, 2011, 7:20 am
  51. HK is correct. “israel” did not invade Lebanon yesterday and will not do so today because it is afraid of The Valiant Resistance. The same will be true tomorrow, so long as Hizbollah has the courage to retain its arms and not surrender them to traitors who believe the false gods of “democracy” and “political freedom” and “self-determination” are more important than sustaining defiance against Zionist aggression.

    Posted by dontgetit | March 23, 2011, 9:36 am
  52. “March14th skunks Barred from bringing in private security, non-governmental organizations hired local gunmen to protect their personnel, using money defined as “technical assistance grants for buying votes and other NED/USAID activities…”. Eventually the term broadened to include any vehicle carrying armed men….”

    So, for years and years NGOs have been building up a database (sic) of local gunmen who can be hired for protection and as a CIA Proxy Militia….Hence, Israel is so scared to invade Lebanon again, because March14th stooges have a daring/secret plan to protect Lebanon, its people, the South and the resources at sea and on Land…and of course, KSA and Bahrain will provide All the funding for this dare-devil plan against the Zionists.

    Posted by HK | March 23, 2011, 9:52 am
  53. To clarify my remarks about racism I am definitely not generalizing here. I know a lot of M14 supporters that are great human beings I count many of them as my dear friends and relatives even if we disagree on politics.(our arguments are memorable) However there is a distinct feel of looking down at the shia in Lebanon by all the other communities.Let us not hide behind our little finger. Anybody who grew up in Lebanon has to have experienced this at some point. Just check the comments of Michel Khoury to Ambassador Feltman regarding the fly over his coffee. This attitude is shared by a lot of Lebanese, I experienced it first hand and still do. Look at the wikileaks of Sfeir, Mou3awwad, Harb, regarding the refugees all they were afraid of was that “they are now in our midst” what if they went to the Solidere area?” “they need to go back to their area’s” do i need to say more. Look i know a number of Aoun supporters who to this day cannot hide a disconnect and a discomfort at the alliance. (there was a nice article in Al-khabar yesterday or the day before about the Lebanese Forces and their attitude to the alliance with the Sunni’s so it’s across the board.)

    Qifa yes the memorandum was signed in Feb 2006 but that still was not a full fledged alliance. All the memorandum stated was that we agree that we have differences that we need to discuss. The alliance did not materialize until after Aoun’s position during the war. The allies at that point of time Of Hizballah were Hariri and Jumblat.

    R2D2 I frequented the south between 1982 and the late 1990’s and was never cut out. I even visited the Beaches you talk about as the ones in Beirut were too expensive to go to. You probably experiences a different reality. I was excluded from east Beirut and the mountains till the early 1990’s

    Posted by elsheikh | March 23, 2011, 10:27 am
  54. elsheikh,

    You don’t have to worry about defending Lebanon anymore, because March14th lackeys have secretly appointed Carlos EDDE as commander in Chief of the secret Proxy-CIA Militia, via specialized NGOs working with NED and Caritas in order to defeat the Zionist occupiers…if they ever dare to Invade Lebanon again and defame the Neo-SHIA of Lebanon and the W. Al F,…

    Posted by HK | March 23, 2011, 10:37 am
  55. A n article in The Jerusalem Post argues that Israel does not support change in Syria since the Syrian border has been the quitest of all borders since 1973. This observation is not new for those who are familiar with the arguments that AIG has been making for a long time. Hat nod to AIG :-)

    Posted by ghassan karam | March 23, 2011, 11:18 am
  56. In a tough neighborhood, where there is no mercy for the weak, no second opportunity for those who cannot defend themselves…. Thus, we must remain strong.” the need to “build a strong Lebanon that strives for peace from a position of strength and self confidence….,” March14th traitors have secretly embarked on a project of self-immolation a la Bou-Azizi in Tunisia, hoping that Israel and the Zionists will have mercy and will be deterred from invading Lebanon ever again…because Sarkozy says so…

    Posted by HK | March 23, 2011, 11:23 am
  57. dontgetit, sorry if you explained this before and I missed it, but I’m wondering what is the interpretation of your use of quotation marks when you write “israel”
    thanks

    Posted by Honest Patriot | March 23, 2011, 12:45 pm
  58. GK,

    Thanks!
    Lest there be any confusion:
    1) Israel will do nothing to support the Assad regime.
    2) I hold a minority view in Israel that the price we will pay because of short term instability is worth it because it will bring many benefits to Israel when the Arab world democratizes. Naturally, it is an uphill battle for me since the longevity of Israeli governments is around 3 years.

    Posted by AIG | March 23, 2011, 1:13 pm
  59. AIG,

    Re:1
    Really?What more should they do? Have iftar together or cut bread? My friend Israel acquiesced when Lebanon was handed over to Syria on a Silver platter by papa Bush. Although they knew the convoys carrying the scuds and rearmament was coming from Syria through the 2006 war and beyond…The IDF just watched the convoys reach their destinations. For lord’s sakes the IDF was even careful which side of the border to bomb (Masnaa) so that it doesn’t create havoc in Syria.

    It is in Israel’s interest to have all the turmoil and conflict centered in Lebanon whereas they can both manage it. Israel & HA along with Syria have symbiotic relationship. Each needs the other… Syria to dominate Lebanon; HA to stay armed; and Israel to have an active conflict to avoid any real talk about a Palestinian State.

    Posted by danny | March 23, 2011, 1:57 pm
  60. Honest Patriot:
    “israel” is not the proper name of a country. It is the name taken by the Zionist entity to suggest a historic Jewish connection to the land of Palestine.

    Posted by dontgetit | March 23, 2011, 2:00 pm
  61. Things are deteriorating quite fast for the Lebanese in the Gulf after HNA made his sectarian speech in line with Iranian plans to destabilize the Gulf. Lebanese who left the Bahrain cannot go back. Most probably those who are left behind will be forced out soon. Other Gulf states will certainly follow in Bahrain’s footsteps soon as the GCC is now in full coordination mode. This is really bad for the Lebanese economy. I would say it is even worse than the LCB saga.

    It has now become clear which Arab countries are participating in the operations in Libya. Kuwait, KSA, Egypt, Qatar and Jordan are all providing material support. That goes to prove to GK that KSA is the least concerned about a threat from such operations.

    Fifteen people have been killed in Syria so far. Six were killed today.

    I second all those who think QN is lagging behind current affairs and posting a non-event not to mention the lack of al-Akhbar’s credibility.

    Posted by anonymous | March 23, 2011, 2:24 pm
  62. Danny,

    You are just plain wrong in your analysis.
    Let me explain again. We, the Israeli people are the IDF. It is a conscript army. Almost all Israelis are either in the IDF or have close relatives in the IDF either in active or reserve duty. We demand that our government take our lives very seriously and will not tolerate any government that fights stupid wars or a government that fights wars badly. If the border with Syria is quiet, how can any Israeli government justify to its people a war with it? It can’t. And most likely any government that starts a war with Syria will not last long whatever the result.

    What the Israeli public wants is peace and quiet on the borders so we can pursue our daily lives and expand our economy. The Syrian regime has delivered all this on the Golan since 1973 and indirectly in Lebanon since 2006. How can the situation on our northern borders be better? What possibly can we gain from a war that we don’t already have? Plus wars are really expensive and we would rather spend money on something else.

    Therefore, Israel is not thrilled about destabilization in any of its neighbors. The worst for Israel are weak Western backed regimes that cannot control their “resistance”. It puts us in a bind because there is no clear target to retaliate against and no deterrence can be established. In 2006 Israel somehow was able to establish new rules and equate Hezboallah with Lebanon. That has brought both countries almost 5 years of quiet. Not bad. This is the middle east. We should not be too greedy.

    In short, Israel hates Assad’s guts but more than that we hate to fight wars. So if you don’t bother us, like he did, we will leave you alone. In the same way, Israel will do nothing if Hezbollah takes over Lebanon and does not attack us.

    Posted by AIG | March 23, 2011, 2:30 pm
  63. Danny

    you really believe all that? it’s a conspiracy by everybody on poor old Lebanon? come on man.
    HA wants to stay armed just for the heck of it and Israel wants a conflict to avoid talk about the Palestinian state? Do you see anybody pressuring Israel about the Palestinian state? the repression of Palestinian? Human rights abuses? Occupying the West bank? Laying siege to Gaza?
    take a minute and go read the actual Wikileaks documents that will give you an idea about what is going on and who is in bed with whom.
    Had Syria played ball with the west do you think Assad (either one) wouldn’t have been feted like how Saddam once was by the west? Here look at the Tyrants in the pocket of the US from all the kings and princes in the Gulf to all the so called presidents Which ones are being prosecuted and which ones will remain in Power? The US administration could not even utter the word resignation and or regime Change about Egypt or Tunis. The tyrants in Bahrein, Yemen and Lybia seem to be weathering the storm quite well. When or If they actually leave it will be like in Egypt where succession is controlled.

    Posted by elsheikh | March 23, 2011, 2:36 pm
  64. Consistency based on clearly stated criteria would remove discretion from those in power…, as well as make Israel/Zionists predictable – and therefore controllable – in ways that may not be in its interests… I don’t think consistency is particularly valuable….given March14th propensity for being traitors to Lebanon willy-nilly whenever any Western Ambassador shows up…

    In game theory terms, deliberate inconsistency – rational irrationality – has distinct benefits. By having a credible threat of reacting severely (severe enough to be against self-interest) when provoked, it adds to the incentive of others not to provoke, because the outcome may be unpredictably unpleasant….

    Posted by HK | March 23, 2011, 2:42 pm
  65. anonymous said:

    “I second all those who think QN is lagging behind current affairs and posting a non-event not to mention the lack of al-Akhbar’s credibility.”

    ya lateef shoo miz3ij…

    roo7 bellish blog ya 7abibi w ana bijeh bza2ifflak. :)

    Posted by Qifa Nabki | March 23, 2011, 2:44 pm
  66. AIG said :”What the Israeli public wants is peace and quiet on the borders so we can pursue our daily lives and expand our economy”

    I do not doubt that you sincerely believe that however you will never achieve peace and quiet while either occupying your neighbors (Lebanon Syria) and or subjugating the Palestinians. It should be clear for you by now that this is what is required for you to Achieve your desire. Israel talks about peace but actions speak louder than words. What is Israel’s stance on the Palestinian issue? and Palestinian lands? do you agree with the two state solution? what are Israel’s Borders?
    A simple solution would arise if Israel actually states its position if they agree to the two state solution then they should immediately stop all building in settlements and undertake withdrawing the settlers (mot expanding settlements.) if you do not agree with the two state solution then you need to give all Palestinians living in the territories Israeli citizenship and full rights. Is there is third way? enlighten me please…

    all the nonsense about peace and love and democracy is sickening

    Israeli “democracy”:

    http://ca.reuters.com/article/topNews/idCATRE72M0JB20110323

    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/03/23/world/middleeast/23gaza.html

    Posted by elsheikh | March 23, 2011, 3:00 pm
  67. AIG,

    You are correct. No bullet fired from Golan. That’s my point. Why do you think? Syria is left alone while harboring the terrorists international? See what happened when they had Ocalan? Turkey threatened and they gave it up. It’s simple you don’t have to invite them for dinner but it accomplishes what Israel wants.

    Elsheikh…Seriously please listen to that drivel that Nassrallah shouts at the screen periodically and you will know why they need Israel’s animosity.
    …and YES poor old Lebanon that had been the hub of all terrorist organizations from PLO and all allied splinters to Baeder maynhof to Italian red brigades to Japanese Red army to ASALA. Yes. Or did you ever think in the tricks that your brain had been playing on you? Did you think Lebanon was ever a nation or really master of its destiny?
    I agree with one State solution. One country called Israel where everyone including the Palestinian refugees having the right to return and live where they wish as citizens.

    Posted by danny | March 23, 2011, 3:35 pm
  68. Elsheich,

    I am for a two state solution but I will not stupidly agree to any solution that allows Iran to fund “resistance” organizations in the new state. I will also not agree to the right of return since it negates the whole idea of a Jewish state and will lead to civil war. The main obstacle to peace as I see it is the right of return. Neither side is able to compromise on this.

    And if we cannot have peace, I will just live with long periods of quiet and low intensity war with an occasional full fledged war. This is the middle east. We must be very humble with our goals.

    Posted by AIG | March 23, 2011, 3:44 pm
  69. QN@ 69.

    LoL.

    Although I think you should take the remark like a badge of pride. You’ve reached almost “God” Status. People are so attached to your every pronouncement! LoL.

    (No offense intended against those who take exception to the comparison of a ‘man’ to the Divine entity).

    Posted by Gabriel | March 23, 2011, 4:02 pm
  70. Elsheikh, my only beef with you is that I want to keep Lebanon out of all these equations. Our land is not occupied and if we stop annoying the 800 lb gorilla in the room Lebanon will do just fine, thank you, and can absorb the Palestinians and create a prosperous country with opportunities for all, non-alignment, first-in-class tourism and banking, and protection by all superpowers against any outside interference or overflight or what have you, be it Iran, or Israel, or our oh-so-dear sister Syria. Leave Lebanon Alone!

    Posted by Honest Patriot | March 23, 2011, 4:09 pm
  71. New post!

    Posted by Qifa Nabki | March 23, 2011, 4:31 pm
  72. QN, if you had done what I hinted to you in the early days at SyriaComment and started a religion, you would now be the Big Kahuna and can order your followers to stop complaining and they’d actually listen. But hey, you missed that chance and now the beast is out of the cage.

    Posted by Honest Patriot | March 23, 2011, 5:19 pm
  73. I doubt it HP. Not even my kids listen to me. :)

    Anonymous, you know I’m teasing, right?

    Posted by Qifa Nabki | March 23, 2011, 5:26 pm
  74. AIG

    This is exactly what i meant. You want peace but you want war at the same time. Get your mind straight and keep a position. A two state solution is just what that means: two states. Not one state and one so called state.
    Your argument about the refugees does not hold water anymore. The Documents released by aljazeera from Ureikat’s office state clearly that the PA accepted every Israeli demand including the issue of the right of return all the way down to a token 50000 people over 10 years. Your problem is not one of people it’s a problem of land you want the land but not those living on it and they won’t leave.
    Let me ask you this in 10-20 years the number of Arabs in Israel excluding the west bank and Gaza wil constitute a big voting block that will only grow what do you propose to do then?
    Your low intensity war and the status quo is not sustainable in the long run. Yu will have to compromise in the end whether it’s now or in 10 years or in 20 .
    The world is changing and with it the control of the media. With blogs and the internet and sociale media your message as of today is staring to get lost. You are down to USA ad Micronesia in the UN what is left?

    Posted by elsheikh | March 23, 2011, 5:36 pm
  75. Ya jame3a, anno ma 7ada minkon maz3ouj min …. no, wait, I’ll continue in EN. I don’t understand, cannot accept and perhaps don’t want to accept how lebanese wanna destroy another lebanese and are ready to cooperate with the anyone to do so. u know, if these so called leaks are true, then i understand today why this country is so ******* up. even if you want to get rid of the hizb, asking for the bombing to continue is a crime by itself. i fail to understand how the people still follow these guys, unbelievable. or am i being too naive? when all morals & ethics are wasted, when those businessmen fail to negotiate on your behalf as a citizen, what is there left to identify with? i’m not defending the hizb, i can’t stand these guys, but when an outsider talks bad about them, i just won’t ally with them against the hizb. this is outrageous.

    Posted by Riyadh | March 23, 2011, 5:43 pm
  76. Honest Patriot

    Spare me please your nonsense about keeping Lebanon out of it. Whether you like it or not you are in the midst of it, your country is OCCUPIED and your country is threatened by the 800 pound gorilla in the room. They do not need any provocation, they are violating your air space your territorial waters your land on Daily basis. What country would tolerate this. Just a couple of days ago they Kidnapped two shepherds in the south, a couple of weeks ago they had their dogs attack another two shepherds, where do you draw the line?

    Posted by elsheikh | March 23, 2011, 5:45 pm
  77. Elsheikh, “where do you draw the line?”

    I draw the line through a treaty of non-aggression between Lebanon and Israel, guaranteed by the five permanent members of the UN Security Council with international observers at the borders and with enforceable discipline against any aggressor.

    I draw the line through naturalization of the Palestinians (for those who chose to become citizen and who swear a pledge of allegiance and obedience to the state).

    I draw the line through a complete abolition of the confessional system with built-in constitutional protections to any and all minorities.

    I draw the line through complete separation of church/mosque/temple and state with allowance for tax-exempt status for religions but with strict laws against any interference with politics.

    I draw the line through a moratorium on any existing politician in office or “za3eem” from running in the next election.

    I draw the line through Lebanon for the Lebanese. A Lebanon that is no more Arab than it is European or Western or Chinese or American. A Lebanon made up of Lebanese – period. Not of Sunnis and Shi3a and Maronites and Druze and Armenians and Kurds.

    If you’re Lebanese, join me in this call and applaud.

    If you’re not Lebanese, butt the h— out!

    Posted by Honest Patriot | March 23, 2011, 5:54 pm
  78. “Anonymous, you know I’m teasing, right?”

    Really? Now I feel much better, I do not have to make my own blog at least.

    Posted by anonymous | March 23, 2011, 7:00 pm
  79. I don’t know why this aticle reappear as one one of the commented, but after re reading some cables, sorry for M8 propaganda, but m14 had an honorable stance

    Posted by karoum | July 10, 2013, 7:53 am

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