Hezbollah, Lebanon

Nasrallah Comments on the STL Indictments

Hizbullah Secretary-General Sayyid Hasan Nasrallah is scheduled to give an address this evening about the Special Tribunal for Lebanon’s (STL) indictments against members of his party. I will attempt to live-blog it, pending the quality of the internet connection. Refresh this page to follow the translation, once the address begins.

**

8:30: Nasrallah begins speaking.

8:34: Le Figaro said a long time ago that Hizbullah members would be targeted, and we already commented on that. We have already explained what the objectives of this project are.

8:35: We know that it is impossible to annul the STL, because this is an American project anyway. Its goal is to tarnish the image of the Resistance, and even to create civil strife in Lebanon.

8:36: I’m going to speak about 3 subjects. I am in the habit, as you know, of giving you a table of contents for my speeches. The first subject is the investigation. The second subject is the Tribunal. And the third subject is our position on the indictments.

8:39: Over the past year, we have suggested to the various authorities that they investigate the Israeli hypothesis [that Israel killed Hariri]. We held a major press conference and presented all kinds of evidence, involving drone footage, witness testimony, etc. We presented all this evidence and said: “Here you go. This constitutes a lead for you to pursue.” Did they follow it? No.

8:40: The evidence we presented is circumstantial, and it is enough to suspect Israel of the crime. But they didn’t even bother looking into it, let alone taking it seriously and building a case on it.

8:42: It’s not my job or the job of Hizbullah to launch an investigation and present evidence to Mr. Bellemare. But we did, and we found once again that there was no interest because this Tribunal is completely politicized.

8:43: In 2005, Mehlis admitted to Le Figaro that he was getting information from Israel. Rather than investigating Israel, this investigation has cooperated with Israel.

8:44: I have a question with regard to the investigation. When the UNIIIC was annulled and the offices in Lebanon were transferred to the Netherlands, everything was taken out via Beirut International Airport, with the exception of the computers. There were 97 computers that were not taken out via the airport, but rather via Israel. So the question to Mr. Bellemare is: Why didn’t you take them out via the airport or the seaport? Why did you take them out of Lebanon via Israel?

8:47: [Shows a video presentation presenting information about the transfer of computer equipment to The Hague via Israel. Shows multiple documents allegedly showing transfer of computer equipment to Israel. Name on the document: Miho Hirose. (Someone please Google this...)]

8:49: This shows that the investigators are hardly objective. As you will see, one of Bellemare’s top officers is from the CIA.

8:51: [Shows another video presentation]. Nick Kaldas was involved with the CIA in Iraq. Michael Taylor, a British officer in the investigation since 2010, and former anti-terrorism officer in New Scotland Yard. Darryl Mendes, an American officer who served in the CIA and FBI and continues to coordinate with these agencies. Was also a general prosecutor for the US Navy. Durayd Bsharawi, a Lebanese officer, known to have bad relations with Syria and Hizbullah. Robert Baer, an American former CIA official who was in charge of hunting Imad Mughniyyeh. (Shows a clip from an interview with Baer, where he talks about hunting and failing to catch Mughniyyeh). In 2010, Baer turned up as an advisor to the STL. [QN: So what?]

8:59: Nasrallah: What’s the point of showing this montage? It’s simply to make the point that this team of advisors is hardly capable of investigating the Israel hypothesis, given its experience of fighting the Resistance.

9:01: Gerhard Lehmann was Mehlis’s deputy. I believe that the time they spent in Lebanon was the golden age of their life. We’re going to show you evidence of Lehmann’s complete corruption.

9:03: [Shows another video presentation] Gerhard Lehmann worked for German intelligence and was Mehlis’s deputy. During his tenure in German intelligence, he worked with Israel. He tried to make a deal with Jamil al-Sayyid. We’re showing you a video capture of Lehmann receiving payment in 2006 from someone. [Hidden camera].

9:05: We have previously talked about corruption in the STL. Did anyone investigate them? We are happy to present Mr. Bellemare with more evidence.

9:06: You have all seen, via New TV’s series “Haqiqa Leaks” how the various investigators were sitting around with the false witnesses. We have even more to say on this score, which we will save til later.

[Internet connection is acting up...stay tuned]

9:09: The worst instances of leaking happened a couple of days ago. The STL delegation meets with the Lebanese delegation. While they were sitting and talking, the Lebanese TV stations were already talking about the names, which are supposed to be secret! So who leaked them? Where is the investigational secrecy?

9:11: The indictments are being used for a political side, not for the cause of finding the truth. There were names that appeared in Der Spiegel and CBC that the indictments did not name but Bellemare said that there would be more indictments.

9:12: Do you remember when Der Spiegel came out with its report? It was just before the 2009 elections. The elections in which hundreds of millions of dollars were spent by March 14? The Der Spiegel leak was part of the electoral campaign against the Resistance.

9:13: All of the leaks and actions by the STL have coincided with key events in Lebanese politics. They want to bring down PM Miqati’s government by any means possible. The indictments were confirmed and announced to give a weapon to the other side (i.e. March 14) to bring down this government. This is the end of the first subject.

9:15: The second subject is the Tribunal. People are saying that these men who are accused should present themselves to the STL and defend themselves.

9:16: Did this Tribunal treat the four generals with any fairness or justice? Jamil al-Sayyid has been pleading his case with the STL tirelessly after being imprisoned for 4 years. Did anything come of it? No. So how do you expect this Tribunal to treat people who have fought against Israel??

9:17: Who is in charge of the STL? Mr. Antonio Cassesse. This man is a dear friend of Israel. [Shows a video presentation]. At a conference in Herzliya (in Israel), Professor George Fletcher apologized to the attendees: “One of the great heroes of our field is not able to be here today… his name is Antonio Cassesse… He is a great friend of Israel.”

9:21: Nasrallah: Cassesse believes that the Resistance is a terrorist organization. So this man is supposed to bring about justice? This man is supposed to be impartial?

9:22: [Video presentation] In 2006 Cassesse sent a letter to Israel which says things like “Israel is a democratic state, etc.” [QN: Yes, but the point of the letter was actually to criticize Israel for its acts that violate humanitarian law, if you look closely at the letter. That was a mistake by Nasrallah... someone should have caught that.]

9:26: Is it possible for a Tribunal like this, with such a president and officers and track record, to actually find out the truth?

9:27: To the final subject: the current situation. To the Lebanese people, I say to them the following: don’t worry about civil strife. Those who talk about civil strife in Lebanon actually want that to come about. There will be no Sunni-Shiite strife, and no civil war in Lebanon. Everyone should be assured that we have a responsible government and trustworthy that will confront this situation effectively. So, to the Lebanese people, don’t worry. Everything is fine.

9:29: To the March 14 forces, I say the following. You consider yourself an opposition to PM Miqati’s government, and that is your right. If you think that the international game is aiding your fortunes, that’s also your right. I have, however, two pieces of advice for you, or let us say two thoughts (since you don’t like to be advised). (1) Don’t ask PM Miqati’s government to try to arrest the indicted individuals, because you wouldn’t be able to do it yourself even if you had a 100% March 14 government. Even if you held every single portfolio, you wouldn’t be able to arrest these individuals, so don’t expect PM Miqati to do it. (2) My second piece of advice is: Don’t demand that PM Miqati be less flexible than PM Hariri was with respect to the STL. The Foreign Ministers of Qatar and Turkey gave me a document that stated that Prime Minister Saad Hariri was ready to accept a certain set of demands (with respect to the STL). I can show you this document. So don’t expect PM Miqati to refuse demands about the STL that Saad al-Hariri accepted. That document was signed by the Qataris, Turks, Syrians, Saudis, and Saad al-Hariri, and we were told that Ms. Clinton was ready to bless the agreement as well.

9:37: To the supporters of the Resistance: there has been a war waged upon us for years. This is no surprise. We have always been prepared for it. Whether the war takes the form of military conflict or media wars or psychological war or whatever, we are prepared. The path of resistance has succeeded in liberating land, and defending our country. So we will confront this issue of the Tribunal just as we have confronted other issues.

9:42: There are people in Lebanon who want to see Sunni-Shiite strife, particularly some Christians in March 14. We will not succumb to this.

9:43: Presents a summary of his speech and some concluding comments. The Resistance has never been stronger.

*

Well, there you have it folks. I’ll have some thoughts about the speech either later today or tomorrow, but right now I have to go prepare for a BBQ. Tfaddalo!

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Discussion

313 thoughts on “Nasrallah Comments on the STL Indictments

  1. Gotta love vacuous statements like these:

    Hizbullah: Bellemare’s Silence on Many Issues Shows Extent of STL’s Credibility Corrosion

    Must be nice making randomly general statements and inferring things from absolutely nothing.

    It’s also very easy. Example:

    Bad Vilbel says “HA’s constant talk about the STL shows the extent of their guilt.”

    See how that works?

    Logic without proof. Make a statement and infer A from B with absolutely no backing data.

    Posted by Bad Vilbel | July 5, 2011, 1:56 pm
  2. Lest we forget our history … there have been many internal elements that have been far from happy with the constitution of Lebanon. I happen to be one of them.

    But there have been two elements that, as far as I can remember, have always been against any form of a “Republic of Lebanon”.

    The first was Assad … and the second is Hizbullah.

    We were utterly and completely dominated by the first for 30 years … and we have been dominated by the second ever since Rafiq Hariri’s murder.

    Posted by R2D2 | July 5, 2011, 2:17 pm
  3. I stumbled upon this blog a while back … after March 14 were voted in … and advocated to hold a national referendum on the fate of the remaining militias weapons.

    It was not well received by the host of this blog.

    I still wonder why, Elias?

    Posted by R2D2 | July 5, 2011, 2:23 pm
  4. I actually liked the idea of a referendum. I think at the end of the day, it washes away the excuses of “being controlled by outsiders” and the typical Lebanese excuse of “being at the mercy of the politicians, etc.”

    Once the Lebanese people answer once and for all the basic questions of what is it they want, they can’t pin that bullshit on others anymore.

    Also, a referendum with yes/no answers removes alot of the “I would support blah, but under blah conditions, etc.” that we all seem to favor in our natural discourse.

    Make it clearcut.

    – Do you want HA to keep their weapons. Yes or No?
    – Do you want to revise the constitution and abolish sectarianism once and for all? Yes/No? (This means, no more quotas in Parliament, anyone can be President, PM, Speaker, Army Commander, etc.)

    And so on…

    Once the Lebanese as a whole choose, they will have no one but themselves to blame.

    I have almost no illusions about such a referendum. My money would be (for the above questions) that the Lebanese would vote not to abolish the sectarian system, for one.
    And I think HA would have a good chance of keeping their weapons too.
    There are too many imbeciles in Lebanon, sadly.

    But at least then, we can turn around and say “You made your bed, you lay in it. You chose sectarianism. You chose to keep an armed militia. Now deal with it.”

    Posted by Bad Vilbel | July 5, 2011, 2:31 pm
  5. http://qifanabki.com/2010/09/29/hariri-tribunal/

    For those that missed it.

    “The end game” could have been resolved through a “national resolution”.

    Posted by R2D2 | July 5, 2011, 2:47 pm
  6. It just occurred to me that Elias is obviously a devout Maronite whether he realizes it or not.

    No wonder Hk’s bullshit has been accepted on this blog for long as it has.

    Posted by R2D2 | July 5, 2011, 3:31 pm
  7. Well, according to some, this blog has become an outlet for the “fanatic right”…hehehehe

    Posted by Bad Vilbel | July 5, 2011, 3:54 pm
  8. Clutching on straws.there’s a nice little saying for the anti-STL crowd, the conspiracy theorists, and the plain loyalists. Keep discrediting the process by throwing dubious claims of minute relevance and at the same time claiming its best to ignore it as an international plot.
    Pathetic is the word and I’m certainly no right winger.

    Posted by maverick | July 5, 2011, 5:41 pm
  9. Gabriel, thanks for giving me a heads-up on Gwynne being male. I got my facts wrong, even after accusing Gwynne of making false statements, such as: “But there was actually no evidence against the four Lebanese generals.” He just made that up. All we know is that they were released because of “insufficient evidence.” But don’t bother crediting the STL with having a high burden of proof. No, the conspiracy angle is far more exciting.

    Lally,
    When you’re an international investigation that is being accused of working for Israel, shipping 97 computers via Israel with a long, undisguised paper trail, involving many international employees who might have to testify under oath is undoubtedly a clumsy bureaucratic and logistical exercise. I don’t see how I mischaracterized it (assuming it’s true). My problem is that it is exactly what you wouldn’t do if you were engaged in a massive conspiracy to fabricate a case. Anyway, I don’t see why a defense lawyer wouldn’t raise this issue if he or she had evidence.

    Posted by Jonathan | July 5, 2011, 6:22 pm
  10. Jonathan,

    Well you know quite well that this at the same time one of the best conspiracies ever pulled and one of the clumsiest ever.

    I mean, we are lead to believe that some dark force is able to silence hundreds of STL employees, judges and professionals from different nationalities, with different affiliations and therefore different pressure points. Without a single whistle-blower coming forward.
    We are also lead to believe that these dark forces are also able to doctor up all sorts of evidence to suit their sinister needs and so on.

    But we are also being asked to be believe that these same dark forces, with such powerful abilities, are so incompetent as to botch up a transfer of intelligence to Israel, leaving a paper trail, as you mentioned, all the way. Not to mention the way they appear to be botching up various details of the investigation (leaks, false witnesses, the 4 generals, etc).

    It’s tragically comic…I’m starting to imagine the cartoon caricature of the archvillain, sitting in his chair, stroking the back of a white cat with his black gloved hand, directing all these conspiracies….but being a completely incompetent nincompoop….Something like Dr. Evil meets the “Hand” from Inspector Gadget…

    Posted by Bad Vilbel | July 5, 2011, 6:42 pm
  11. R2D2

    I don’t recall your proposal for a referendum, much less my response. Sounds like a reasonable idea in theory, but I agree with BV: chances are that Hizbullah’s weapons will pass the test easily. The 2009 elections were, in a way, a referendum on the weapons, and Hizbullah won that one by over 10% more votes.

    As for your comment regarding what confession I belong to, what does that have to do with whether or not I let someone comment on my blog. Who was the last “devout Maronite” you met whose creed resembled anything like the bizarre and unique cocktail of political affiliations and conspiracy theories that HK serves us on a daily basis?

    HK has been warned plenty of times and even suspended for a few weeks here and there when he has gotten to be too annoying. If/when things get bad again, he’ll be suspended again.

    Posted by Qifa Nabki | July 5, 2011, 6:59 pm
  12. QN,

    I personally think having an official referendum (not a pseudo-referendum like the 2009 elections) is the best thing Lebanon could possibly do, even if it means HA gets to keep their weapons and so on.
    Why?
    Not because of the actual results of the referendum. Those would be immaterial in the end.
    But because the biggest hurdle to the maturing of the Lebanese people as a people/society/whathaveyou seems to be our inability to accept the consequences of our actions.
    I use the word “maturing” with purpose here, because the Lebanese remind me of a 5 year old who still hasn’t learned that actions have consequences, and who still essentially lies and tantrums his way out of owning up to anything.
    The Lebanese are the way they are, resorting to idiotic conspiracy theories, always blaming shadowy forces, their neighbors to the west, east, south and north, anyone but themselves, for a simple reason. They’ve always had that “out”. The non-stop excuses that it’s “out of our hands”.
    Well, I think it’s time the Lebanese own up to their own decisions.
    Elections don’t cut it. The electoral system is too arcane to give the results the effect of a referendum.
    The latter, on the other hand…simple yes/no answers.
    There are no other ways to interpret it.

    I think we (The Lebanese in general) could stand to learn a LOT about ourselves by answering the following 2 questions:
    – Abolish the sectarian system entirely
    – No to HA’s weapons

    with simple yes/no and then BARE THE CONSEQUENCES.

    Posted by Bad Vilbel | July 5, 2011, 7:42 pm
  13. Some folks think that their Tom Clancy novels acquired fluency in terminology like HUMINT, Psy ops, Black ops etc etc can fool others into believing they had once worked for the Company, however most probably the closest they have been to the inner circles of DC is a stint at the Panda Express in Tysons corner.

    Posted by V | July 5, 2011, 7:42 pm
  14. I do like that new show “Covert Affairs”! :)

    Posted by Bad Vilbel | July 5, 2011, 7:44 pm
  15. R2D2

    Let HK be man. He is the entertainment section. BV, referndums with the free will of public; I am all for. However; how can you have a true reflection of the Shia voter (don’t you guys go on blasting me now…They are held hostage by HA representing itself as the protector of its rights)? If the Supreme Leader goes on TV and declares that no Lebanese government can arrest those indicted in 300 years…What other result would you expect in these circumstances?

    Posted by danny | July 5, 2011, 9:22 pm
  16. V,

    I’m not that far from the Panda Express. And a ziocon to boot.

    That males me all powerful. I can control the actions of Bashar Assad from my secret lair.

    Posted by Akbar Palace | July 5, 2011, 9:23 pm
  17. BV,

    You have to consider that the rather clumsy machinery of democracy (media talk, campaigning, inflamed rhetoric, the language and phrasing of the statement to be voted on) is not neutral and shapes the way an issue is understood and the way it is discussed. A divisive referendum with a supposedly settled outcome may make it difficult for the issue to be reshaped or mediated through discussion in the future — not good for minorities. One of the good things about representative democracy in my opinion is that it is not direct and not particularly clear, and it offers protection against the tyranny of the majority. On weapons, the 2009 “pseudo-referendum” was relatively clear and the attempt at greater clarity would create distortions of its own. On sectarianism, why gauge national opinion in a sweeping way and so distort the debate on particular issues? Let parliament debate and legislate particular reforms.

    Posted by Jonathan | July 5, 2011, 9:55 pm
  18. High speed internet finally available in Lebanon! Here’s an English version excerpt from the Daily Star:

    “The ministry contacted ISPs Monday morning to inform them that capacity they had requested several months ago from the India-Middle East-Western Europe submarine cable would now be available, Habib Torbey, the head of the Lebanese Telecom Association and president of GlobalCom Data Services, which groups all of the country’s private ISPs, told The Daily Star Tuesday. Torbey said IDM, the ISP owned by GDS, had noticed the increase in capacity Monday afternoon.

    This will really change the Internet landscape in Lebanon,” Torbey said.

    The 13,000 kilometer IMEWE cable runs between India and France and has a potential capacity of 3.84 Terabits per second. It has been operational since 2009, but its implementation in Lebanon has been repeatedly delayed. Its intended launch date of Dec. 13, 2010, was postponed by the IMEWE consortium, which controls the supply, because of a dispute between the Telecoms Ministry, then headed by Charbel Nahhas, and OGERO, the semi-autonomous company responsible for administering telecoms in the country.”

    The real story here is that Abd Al-Menem Yousef, OGERO’s general director had refused to activate these lines for a year without a relevant cause or reason. But with several lawsuits against him creeping up, he suddenly, and again without reason or explanation, decides to have these lines opened up. Nice of the Daily Star to whitewash the real history by squaring its delay on the IMEWE consortium in the above article, which is not true. The cable was tied into the Lebanese telecomm grid and was ready for use since August of last year, but was held back personally by Menem, even after a direct order from x-minister Nahas in Dec of 2010. Anyway, whether you are M8, or 14, or anywhere in-between, this is a small but important victory. The new capacity should help internet speeds and prices for everyone.

    Posted by Saint | July 5, 2011, 11:12 pm
  19. V # 214;

    All you can do is surmise and speculate about what one does or doesn’t do by reading the tea-leaves…. One day you conclude that I was unable to obtain a US visa, hence my grudge, the next day you place me somewhere on a map in DC. Bravo, keep up the good work, your next carrier move is a psychic extraordinaire.
    Meanwhile i will keep hammering out what i know first hand about the assassins of the most infamous White House Murder INC, in history, and the band of thugs & despicable war criminals in the Zioconned Washington, Tel Aviv and Damascus! :)

    Posted by HK | July 6, 2011, 3:04 am
  20. Jonathan, Saint

    I know a referendum is not truly protective of minorities, etc.
    That is exactly why i framed only 2 specific questions.
    I did not put forth a question such as “Should we have an islamic republic?” for example. etc.

    – Abolishing sectarianism
    – Weapons of HA

    are two issues that transcend minorities.

    Secondly, as I said, I fully expect that both questions would fail the test, so to speak, due to the very reasons you mentioned: propaganda, twisting facts, and as Jonathan mentioned: the Shia population being beholden to HA.

    But the lesson in all this is what matters more than the actual outcome. Let the shia vote for keeping HA weapons. Let the Lebanese vote for keeping the sectarian system.
    The true intent here is that they all learn to live with the consequences of what they voted for rather than blaming outsiders, etc.

    Let’s take your example. Let’s say the shia vote en masse for HA weapons, given that SHN told them to.
    And let’s say they come to suffer a war with Israel or somesuch misery. Or some crippling international sanctions, or what have you.
    They would not be able to blame others/conspiracies/etc for their fate.

    I think such an outcome would give the shia (i am focusing on them only because of the example above, stated by Jonathan) something to think about. I think in time, it would alienate someone like SHN and empower the shia who originally followed his edicts blindly to turn against him. I think enough of them would come to realize that THEY brought their misery on themselves by their vote, and no one else is to blame.
    It may not happen overnight. But i think the Lebanese truly need to start learning that what befalls them is in large part their own doing, not that of foreigners. And that lesson will not happen until you remove the excuses and the “Well, if it was only up to us, this wouldn’t have happened” etc.
    You put it to the test with a referendum, and then you say “It WAS up to you. And YOU voted this way.”
    And hopefully, sentiments will start to turn. The apathy and passivity of the typical Lebanese will start to be replaced by more awareness…etc.

    At least that’s my theory…

    Posted by Bad Vilbel | July 6, 2011, 3:05 am
  21. Anyone would like to claim the glory of accurately predicting what would be the reference to the STL in the policy statement? Need to provide a link to your prediction in order to claim the prize! ;-)

    Posted by Badr | July 6, 2011, 3:37 am
  22. Saint #198,

    I’d be really surprised if telephone evidence was all that Bellemare has. Presumably they have some kind of money trail on the truck. Presumably they have some idea who the driver of the truck was and what contacts he had with whom in the weeks before the explosion. And presumably they have made headway with establishing exactly where these SIM cards came from and how they got into particular hands. Telephone evidence whereby the prosecutor can give the time and place of certain phone calls is pretty good circumstantial evidence, so long as the handsets can then be linked to particular hands (might be tough). Enough good quality circumstantial evidence can be sufficient to tie individuals to the crime. What could possibly constitute a “smoking gun” at this point anyway?

    Posted by Jonathan | July 6, 2011, 4:15 am
  23. من الواضح جداً بأن الشعب اللبناني هو من أكثر الشعوب فقداناً للذاكرة الجماعية، كما أنه من أقلّهم حساباً للمرتكبين.

    هذا ليس بتجنّي على الشعب اللبناني وأنا واحداً منه، بل انه توصيف لحقيقة كنا نتغنّى بها أيام الحرب من حيث القدرة على النسيان وسرعة التأقلم بين القصف ودفن شهدائنا نهاراً والرقص واللهو ليلاً!
    ربما قد تكون حالة صحية كي لا نصاب باضطرابات نفسية، إنما بقائنا في فقدان للذاكرة الجماعية وللمحاسبة، لن يبني لنا وطناً ولا مؤسسات.

    لذا، من المفيد أن نستذكر سويةً بعض المحطات لعيّنة صغيرة من الشخصيات التي تدّعي الحرص على الدولة و”تحب الحياة”:

    هل تذكرون الآب والابن والروح الحريرية؟
    هل يمكن أن ننسى ما فعلته هذه المدرسة إن من حيث الفساد في الإدارات وان من حيث الهدر في المال العام والموازنات من دون قطع حساب والدين العام مقابل رهان توطين فئة من مذهب معيّن، وتجنيس ما يوازي10% من عدد سكان لبنان، للصدفة أنهم من مذهب معيّن؟

    هل ننسى ادعاء البطولات وكسر الأيدي ولن يأخذوا توقيع على مرسوم التجديد للرئيس لحود، فإذا بالمرسوم يوقّع ويجرّ معه كل أعضاء كتلة المستقبل (ما عدا مسرحية امتناع غطاس خوري)؟ وبعد الخروج السوري من لبنان خرجوا هم على الشاشات وادعوا بطولات التحرير. فإذا بهم فعلاً يطبّقون المثل الشعبي القائل: “قوم عنّي تفرجيك”.

    هل ننسى حملة تلفزيون المستقبل على حكومة الرئيس الحص بحيث إن أمطرت الدنيا، ذهب مصوروه إلى أحياء البؤس في الأوزاعي ناقلين بأن هذه هي حال العاصمة بيروت. وكأن بيروت في عهد غير عهد الحريري هي بيوت تنك وطرقات تراب ومياه مبتذلة تطفو على سطح الأرض؟

    هل ننسى ما فعله الابن والروح في التحالف الرباعي2005 وحرب تموز 2006 وانتخابات 2009، فكان شراء الأصوات يتم عن نفس الشهيد وروح الشهيد ومن ليس معنا، هو قاتل الشهيد؟
    هل ننسى الحقيقة ليكس وتآمر الابن مع شاهد زور يأخذ منه التعليمات ولوهلة أحسسنا بان زهير الصديق سوف يقوم ويصفع ابن الحريري ؟

    هل ننسى الدعوى الجزائية التي رفعت على فؤاد السنيورة في قضية محرقة وهمية للنفايات كلّفت الخزينة ملايين الدولارات؟ فكانت النتيجة إن كوفئ السنيورة بإعادته وزيراً للمال في حكومات الشهيد ومن ثم رئيساً للوزراء من بعد استشهاد الرئيس الحريري؟! ويطلع علينا أحدهم شالحاً ربطة عنقه من كثرة ما هو مشنوق، ليحاضر بالعفة وبالارتياب المشروع!

    يلزمنا مئات الصفحات لتعداد هذه الحقبة الفاسدة من تاريخ لبنان فنكتفي بتلك الأمثلة المعبّرة والملخّص التالي عن ما يسمّيه البعض، “انجازات المدرسة الحريرية”:
    1- انجاز 60 مليار دولار أميركي دين عام.
    2- انجاز صرف 12 مليار دولار أميركي على مؤسسة كهرباء لبنان وحتى هذه اللحظة لا كهرباء.
    3- انجاز دفع تعويض مئات الملايين من الدولارات لشركات الخليوي في صفقة مشبوهة تجعل وكأن الدولة لم تلتزم بالعقود.

    4- انجاز سوكلين وأغلى معالجة طن نفايات على وجه الأرض
    5- انجاز سوليدير ونهب أملاك المواطنين
    6- انجاز أسوأ انترنيت في العالم

    7- انجاز مرسوم التجنيس وشوائبه
    8- انجاز مجالس رديفة (انماء واعمار، مهجرين، الجنوب الخ…) تأكل من درب الدولة لحساب أزلام وصرف نفوذ
    9- انجاز ترخيص لحزب تكفيري لا يعترف بالدولة اللبنانية
    10- أما حبة الكرز على قالب الحلوى، فهو انجاز قانون عفو عن إرهابيين قتلوا ضباط وعناصر في الجيش اللبناني كما وعن إرهابي قتل رئيس حكومة أثناء ولايته وليس كما هو حال الشهيد، رئيس حكومة سابق.

    هل تذكرون سمير جعجع؟
    في كل مناسبة يطلع علينا ببيت شعر من صف البكالوريا.
    ولا يخجل بأن يدّعي البطولات وتبني المقاومة أباً وأماً وابناً.
    للمفارقة حاولت جاهداً أن استذكر بعض محطات “بطولات” جعجع و”مقاومته” ولم أجد سوى هزائم في وجه الفريق الآخر، أما الانتصارات والمقاومة فلم تكن سوى على أبناء جلده:
    – هزيمة خروج الكتائب والجبهة اللبنانية من شمال لبنان ليصبحوا منبوذين وغير مرحّب بهم.
    – هزيمة مقاومته في الجبل والشوف ضد الاشتراكي، الفلسطيني والسوري، بالإضافة إلى تهجير جميع القرى المسيحية في الجبل.
    – هزيمة مقاومته في شرق صيدا وتهجير المسيحيين من ديارهم
    .
    أما انتصاراته فهي كثيرة وللأسف على المسيحيين فقط:
    – انتصاره في مجزرة أهدن وإبادة عائلة طوني فرنجية وعشرات المسيحيين ممن كانوا في القصر
    – انتصاره في “الأمر لي” وقتل أكثر من 800 شاب مسيحي في المجلس الحربي فقط لأنهم مع حبيقة
    – انتصاره في تفجير كنيسة زحله في محاولة لاغتيال حبيقة واعتذاره من المطران قبيل انتخابات 2009
    – عملية “ماد ماكس” ومحاولة قتل قائد الجيش آنذاك ميشال عون ولما فشل استعان بالجيش السوري لينتصر في 13 تشرين
    – انتصاره في تصفية ضباط وعناصر الجيش اللبناني في ثكنة عمشيت
    – محاولة تصفية سرية المغاوير في ثكنة أدما ولما فشل، انتصر بتفجير جميع طائرات الهليكوبتر في الثكنة.
    – انتصاره في تصفية داني شمعون وعائلته

    تلك كانت عينة صغيرة من الانتصارات التي حققها “سيد المقاومة” جعجع لكي لا ننسى المحكمة العسكرية لقواته في ضبيه واعدام غسان لحود وسمير زينون بجرم التعامل مع ايلي حبيقة ومحاولة قتل “القائد”. ويشاع أيضاً بأنه متهم في تصفية غيث خوري وزوجته، الياس الزايك وغيرهم ممن عارضوا سياساته…

    ها هو اليوم وبكل وقاحة، يطلع علينا السيد جعجع “أب وأم وأبن المقاومة” ليحاضر عن العفة ويدين الاغتيال السياسي!

    يطول الحديث عن بوتقة 14 شباط ويلزمنا صفحات من الكتابة لتعداد “انجازاتهم” فرداً فرداً، ولكننا نختم ببعض المحطات بهدف الاستذكار وعدم فقدان الذاكرة الجماعية مرة بعد مرة.

    فهل يذكر طلاب الجامعة اليسوعية تحديداً، كيف أن القوات اللبنانية وبأمر من ستريدا جعجع رفضوا التظاهر الى جانب التيار الوطني الحرّ في 23 تشرين 2004 لأن شباب الوطني الحرّ رفعوا شعار 1559؟

    هل يذكر هؤلاء الطلاب بطولات سامي الجميل الذي كان ينتظر في آخر كل تظاهرة ليأكل شباب التيار الوطني الحر العصي وعندما يتأكد من أن كاميرات التلفزيون قد حضرت، يتقدّم إلى الصف الأمامي ويتدافع مع بعض العناصر الأمنية ليصبح وكأنه هو قائد المظاهرة؟…

    هل تذكرون فارس سعيد الذي سوّق له في قضاء جبيل بأنه صديق الرئيس لحود والمصلحة الجبيلية تقضي بانتخابه؟ علماً بأنه في فترة حكم الحريري كان من أصحاب المعارضين له، على التلفزيون فقط لا غير.

    فإذا بفارس سعيد يكون رأس حربة في شتم الرئيس لحود وتهميش الموقع الماروني الأول بعد استشهاد الحريري!

    وهل تذكرون بطرس حرب؟

    حدّث ولا حرج.

    كلنا يعلم كيف كانت المخابرات السورية ترسل له فانات الناخبين من طرابلس وضواحيها في كل مرة كان عليه خطر السقوط في الانتخابات وكان من أشد المتكلّمين فقط لاغير ضد سياسة الحريري الشهيد.

    هل تذكرون أيها اللبنانيون جلسات الثقة في عهد الرئيس الشهيد رفيق الحريري؟

    هل تذكرون بأن الشهيد لم يكن يشعر بالحاجة لدخول الحمام وترك القاعة إلا عندما يأخذ الكلام فارس سعيد وبطرس حرب؟

    كان الاعتقاد السائد بأن بعض الكلام ضد الحريري والوصاية السورية، ينفس احتقان الشارع المسيحي ولا يؤثر على الخط البياني لتلك السياسة. فكان الرئيس الشهيد بغنى حتى عن سماع “الكلام” وكان يفضل الدخول إلى المرحاض بدلاً عن ذلك….

    كل ذاكرة جماعية وأنتم بخير.

    Posted by HK | July 6, 2011, 4:25 am
  24. Let’s have a referendum on HA Weapons. Simple YES/NO by citizens locally and throughout the diaspora.

    If HA gets the vote to keep its weapons, the caveat is that all other political parties have the right to arm themselves with Israel & the great Satan as the pretense.

    If the Lebanese favor HA Weapons, if they favor a political party with a private army, if they favor civil war, then so be it.

    Posted by Razmig | July 6, 2011, 6:55 am
  25. Ghassan Karam @48
    I do not think that Hariri junior’s tenure (I include here Saniora’s also) has been a glaring success on any front. Indeed, I feel that his ‘reign’ has if anything widened the sectarian schism in Lebanon and made people, and the state poorer.

    I am keeping an open mind about the 2nd Miqati government, if you do not mind! I would like to see what his Cabinet can do when/if it tackles issues of interest to the majority of the people IN Lebanon.

    AIG @62
    I’ve known you from your contributions to be overtly level headed, your covert messages notwithstanding. I believe that Hizbullah has achieved what it has planned for in the interim while not abandoning any of its long term strategic objectives, irrespective whether one agrees with it or think it is tenable.

    Let us look at the awe with which the State of Israel’s war machine used to be viewed, regionally and internationally. It certainly is not a rosy picture anymore. Tactically speaking, Israel, since 1948, has been operating with impunity in the South of Lebanon. Now, extreme care is the order of the era. No more 1978 or 1982, 1996 etc. The year 2000 and the outcome of 2006 insured that. Moreover, the existence of the Hizbullah factor has made it incumbent on the State of Israel to rethink its tactics, if not strategies. For the first time since 1948, or even before, the State has been operating in a reactive mode, not the pro-active entity that operated with no accountability by its belligerents.

    What I am trying to allude to is that the borders are currently ‘calm’, is a direct consequence of Hizbullah’s imposed deterrence rather than the other way round. Lest we forget, it has invariably been the State of Israel that initiated invasions, not the other way round, irrespective of the reasons/rationale.

    LebanesePatriot @66
    I agree with you wholeheartedly that Hizbulla WAS scared of the STL. Wouldn’t any sane person/organization be fearful in the face of almost universal animosity based solely on its political and strategic options? Let us look who is stacked against Hizbullah: USA, Israel, Western Europe in general (although even the stance within the EU is not uniform), the UN (although that doesn’t reflect much as we all know the subservience of the UN, especially the Security Council to certain interests/agendas.
    That said I believe that Hizbullah is no longer fearful of the STL, although the nightmare of the Sunni-Shiite schism developing into street skirmishes remains something that the organisation is monitoring closely. The organisation is resigned to fighting what it believes to be a vehicle to at least weaken it. The Hizb is mistrustful of the STL for reasons it has made public on many occasions. Of course this is a matter of much debate. But the mere debate surrounding the STL makes it more vulnerable in the court of ‘public opinion’, the exact battlefield that Hizbullah selected for its fight.

    Regards

    Posted by QuestionMarks | July 6, 2011, 7:15 am
  26. Awesome

    Let us look at the awe with which the State of Israel’s war machine used to be viewed, regionally and internationally.

    QuestionMarks,

    Let us also look at the awe with which the State of Israel created a successful economy while in a state or war, with nations and organizations still committed to her destruction for the past 63 years.

    In addition let us look at the awe with which these hostile nations squandered their resources while trying to accomplish Israel’s destruction.

    Posted by Akbar Palace | July 6, 2011, 9:17 am
  27. It’s not too late to seek a newer world.
    Push off, and sitting well in order smite
    The sounding furrows; for my purpose holds
    To sail beyond the sunset, and the baths
    Of all the western stars, until I die.
    It may be that the gulfs will wash us down:
    It may be we shall touch the Happy Isles,
    And see the great Achilles, whom we knew.
    Tho’ much is taken, much abides; and tho’
    We are not now that strength which in old days
    Moved earth and heaven, that which we are, we are;
    One equal temper of heroic hearts,
    Made weak by time and fate, but strong in will
    To strive, to seek, to find, and not to yield….

    Posted by HK | July 6, 2011, 9:55 am
  28. Question marks said,
    ‘although the nightmare of the Sunni-Shiite schism developing into street skirmishes remains something that the organisation is monitoring closely. The organisation is resigned to fighting what it believes to be a vehicle to at least weaken it. ‘

    If that was the case, why the arrogant and derogatory remarks against the Future movement on a daily basis including the HA’s Allies not least of them, Der General. The political rhetoric and verbal abuse displayed by the HA mouthpieces and pro-Syrians would surely contribute to further dividing the gap. Lets not mention the 7th May events which was obviously a show of coercion and intimidation. If anything, it is HA’s culture and conduct that contributed to the schism. Supporting blindly the Assad regime does not help its cause either. Finally, the Shiite-Sunni schism might be stoked by the Western divide and rule mechanism of power politics but does not the blame fall on well, the Sunnis and shiites? If there was a genuine and strong cooperation including dialogue, ending political accusations and creating a friendlier atmosphere, wouldnt that make them immune to any plot against it.
    Nasrallah and his speakers remind us daily and caution us tirelessly of the international plot to divide Sunnis and Shiites.

    Posted by maverick | July 6, 2011, 9:55 am
  29. QM,

    Your assessment is completely wrong. If Israel had wanted to take any part of Lebanon it could have done it in 67. It did not. If Israel would have wanted to stay in Lebanon in 2000, it could have done that also. Israel was losing 10 soldiers a year in Lebanon. That is 10 too many, but still something Israel could easily bear. Israel left because Ehud Barak wrongly assumed that after that the border will be quiet since it will be demarcated by the UN. He was of course wrong. Between 2000 and 2006 Hezbollah maid countless attacks against Israel and the border was not quiet:

    http://www.mfa.gov.il/NR/exeres/9EE216D7-82EF-4274-B80D-6BBD1803E8A7,frameless.htm?NRMODE=Published

    History is very clear, when Lebanon does not bother Israel, Israel does not bother Lebanon. Israel is reactive in Lebanon.

    Since 2006, the border and Sheba farms have been very quiet. The borders are calm because Hezbollah has been deterred by the 2006 war, not because Israel has been deterred. Hezbollah contests the Sheba Farms, yet they have been completely quiet since 2006, which was not the case between 2000 and 2006, why? During Cast Lead (the Gaza operation), Hezbollah did nothing, why? Since 2006 Hezbollah has not made one “resistance” operation, which is exactly what Israel wants.

    Posted by AIG | July 6, 2011, 9:56 am
  30. cont’d

    but what ive seen, is that HA is not innocent in deepening this divide. Its not all one way traffic of course, but if you want to keep making these claims on end, you should at least cover your bases.

    Posted by maverick | July 6, 2011, 9:58 am
  31. +On a lighter note, has anyone been watching these very interesting parliament proceedings……….. What drugs is MP Ali Ammar on???????

    Posted by maverick | July 6, 2011, 10:06 am
  32. It seems Hassan reads QN….

    http://www.dailystar.com.lb/News/Politics/2011/Jul-06/Nasrallah-Justice-in-Hariri-case-key-to-sustained-stability.ashx#axzz1RKn7YVfV

    Let’s see him put words to action. It appears that even Hassan disagrees with all those Anti-STLers who frequent QN!

    Posted by Gabriel | July 6, 2011, 10:15 am
  33. @227 & 230 et al

    …I must have struck a sensitive cord!

    Be that as it may, but one cannot but mull over the visible blunt nature of the State’s current deterrent factor. In strategic terms, the mere fact that Lebanon has imposed a change in strategic balance by threatening to carry the fight deep into the entity (for the first time ever in the state’s contemporary history) ought to be, and is being considered, by all accounts. Approaching this ‘little’ problem seems to remain an issue for Zionist decision makers.

    Regards

    Posted by QuestionMarks | July 6, 2011, 11:54 am
  34. [Comment removed]

    Posted by HK | July 6, 2011, 1:18 pm
  35. [Comment removed]

    Posted by HK | July 6, 2011, 1:24 pm
  36. The rule of law requires that in any criminal case the burden of proof beyond any reasonable doubt is the responsibility of the prosecution. That’s a constitutional right and heretofore within the confines of the terms of reference…. Our National rights were set in stone for a reason…. It gives the innocent a chance in an open “honest court” to not be unfairly convicted. Sometimes it allows the guilty to walk. The process will never be perfect.

    Lawyers are often portrayed as snakes and yeah, some do leave a slime trail. It’s only when we personally know them or need a fighter on our side that we think otherwise. Sometimes they are necessary evils in this strange world. It’s all about winning and the winners smile and celebrate…

    The media whores and their bobble head lawyer expert opinion talkers will be made slobbering fools. Poor actors in their houses of ill repute….and “the disgusting lawyers, the incompetent talking heads who get on television and talk about targeted political assassination cases they don’t know a damn thing about….”

    Meanwhile a great number of criminals from the most infamous Zioconned White House Murder INC, walk the streets or hide in their homes without a dime of our hard earned taxpayer money being spent to investigate them. The perpetrators of dozens of assassinations in the Levant since January 24th 2002…., and the horrendous inside job of 9/11 , the liars and murderers who took the world to war for 10 years…killing millions of innocent people, the criminal bankers who are in the process of stealing everything in sight are still on a free ride. So are their Federal Reserve and media enablers….

    We’re waiting on those trials of treason and 1st degree murder and extra-judicial assassinations by Dick CHENEY and his goons…and war crimes and we expect the honest execution of the rule of law. We’ll watch and be extremely tough on the prosecution and for them to prove beyond a responsible reasonable doubt…

    I’m having a party at my house after we arrest the bankers, media whores and government that is responsible for 9/11 and all the criminality we’ve seen the past 10+ years by the most infamous Zioconned White House Murder INC, on a Global scale.

    Posted by HK | July 6, 2011, 2:00 pm
  37. Jonathan @223-

    “Presumably they have some kind of money trail on the truck. Presumably they have some idea who the driver of the truck was and what contacts he had with whom in the weeks before the explosion. And presumably they have made headway with establishing exactly where these SIM cards came from and how they got into particular hands.”

    “Presumably” is right. I was simply commenting about what was leaked, which until now has only mentioned the telecomm data as the main evidence. Absent believable direct witnesses who are in one way or another tied to the crime (and you can bet this is something they don’t have otherwise it would have been all over the news from day one) we are back to circumstantial evidence. I am not saying that circumstantial evidence is not enough to make a conviction, but remember that the real jury here is public opinion. Unless the STL can show incontrovertible evidence it will be extremely hard to change entrenched political and ideological positions cultivated and honed through decades of war, occupation suffering and death. The politicization of the STL, and the perception of it as a tool of Western policy, did not suddenly begin with this case. It is the general view that anything the US/Europe push on the ME is tainted and is there to benefit Israel first and foremost. HA really does not have to work too hard on this.

    Posted by Saint | July 6, 2011, 2:14 pm
  38. HK

    You are veering dangerously off-topic again. Please return to earth or take a short break from commenting.

    Thx

    Posted by Qifa Nabki | July 6, 2011, 2:16 pm
  39. QM,

    You asked a question and got an argued answer.

    Do you really believe what you are saying? Syria has much more firepower than Hezbollah, yet they did nothing when Israel bombed their nuclear reactor.

    Israelis have bomb shelters, Lebanese don’t. Israel has missile defense systems, Lebanon doesn’t. Nasrallah admitted that he made a mistake starting a war with Israel and you continue with the same thinking. Israel has gotten exactly what it wanted, a quiet border with Lebanon. It is amusing that you call this “deterrence” when the whole aim of Hezbollah was to make the border hot and retrieve the Sheba Farms. The results on the ground are clear. For the last 5 years, Hezbollah has submitted to Israel’s will. They haven’t done even one “resistance” operation and the Sheba farms are extremely peaceful.

    The bottom line is that Hezbollah’s weapons are useless against Israel. If Hezbollah uses them, Lebanon will be flattened. But the weapons are very useful against fellow Lebanese. You are lucky that Hezbollah is able to fool so many Lebanese about the true use of their weapons.

    Posted by AIG | July 6, 2011, 2:30 pm
  40. Well, it sure looks like everyone’s happy: Israel got exactly what it wanted. A peaceful border.
    HA got exactly what it wanted an illusion of “deterrence” and a quiet, invasion-free, border.
    I guess there’s nothing to argue about anymore. Game over? Both sides are happy?

    Posted by Bad Vilbel | July 6, 2011, 2:50 pm
  41. “These are major insults, we cannot remain silent,” Hajj Hassan shouted.

    Apparently HA MPs walked out en masse from today’s parliament session…

    It seems mister Hajj Hassan was horribly offended, as witness the quote above…

    Well, gee mister Hajj-Idiot. Did you stop and notice how many times YOU AND YOUR BUDDIES have been insulting people left and right? Calling everyone a “spy” or a “foreign agent” is fine when you’re the one doling out insults, but God forbid anyone take a jab at you and your precious “Resistance”. Then it’s a “major insult”.

    Hell can’t come fast enough for these hypocrites….

    Posted by Bad Vilbel | July 6, 2011, 2:56 pm
  42. Question Marks

    I have always agreed with AIG on the deterrence issue. We’ve had many discussions about this issue and I have yet to hear a convincing argument against the basic position that it is Hizbullah that is being deterred, not the IDF.

    Look at it this way: Nasrallah himself said after the war that had they known what Israel’s response would have been to the kidnapping of the two soldiers, they wouldn’t have launched the operation. This statement perfectly exemplifies the concept of deterrence. When X admits that he will not embark upon a certain course of action because of the likely response of Y, he is in effect admitting that he has been deterred by Y.

    Hizbullah has outgrown its “business model”, as far as resistance activities are concerned. It is too big and too enmeshed in the Lebanese state to fight Israel anymore. With every increase in its military capability, its margin for actually conducting resistance activities has narrowed. This is why the language has started to shift, since 2006, away from “resistance” toward “national defense”. Resistance, being fundamentally offensive and proactive, is no longer a real option for Hizbullah because the party has too much to lose. So they are trying to re-package their military capabilities as defensive and reactive. This suits Israel fine. Not so good for the resistance axis, though.

    Posted by Qifa Nabki | July 6, 2011, 3:07 pm
  43. BV,

    Israel is happy. It is game over in the case of Israel vs. Hezbollah. Maybe one more war, but I doubt it. The price for Hezbollah would be too high as the last 5 years prove. What 2006 did was make Hezbollah understand why Syria has not started a war with Israel in decades. There is no reason that the Lebanese border moving forward will not be like the Syrian border.

    The game is still on inside Lebanon. The US may care about the actual results, but strategists in Israel, not so much. It does not matter much to Israel if Lebanon is controlled by Hezbollah or another party. Obviously, the Lebanese care.

    Posted by AIG | July 6, 2011, 3:12 pm
  44. #243

    Strange. Do you think QM has DUNCE written across his forehead?

    Read the structure of his posts. (S)He is not unintelligent.

    This bravado display is just silliness in the forum. Of course QM realizes that it is HA that has been deterred and not the other way around.

    Posted by Gabriel | July 6, 2011, 4:15 pm
  45. AIG,

    I was being sarcastic in the comment above when I said everyone’s happy. I agree with you and what QN posted above.
    It’s just funny to me when I see each side saying how happy they are for having achieved deterrence. Makes me wanna smile and say “Well, if everyone’s so damn happy, then there’s really no issue any more. Right? They should all kiss and make up!”

    I’m reminded of some cheezy kids talent show we used to have in Lebanon back in the 80s, for those who remember, where after everyone had performed, and gotten their points, the host would announce “Tout le monde a gagne!” (everyone won!).

    Hehe

    PS: Yeah. I just dated myself…

    Posted by Bad Vilbel | July 6, 2011, 4:16 pm
  46. Also, I, for one, would have LOVED to see Qanso and Daher kick each other’s asses on the parliament floor.
    It’s far past time these bozos take their mafioso fights in person, rather than sending armed thugs on the streets to terrorize citizens every time they have a disagreement.
    In fact, I say let em all duke it out from now on! Wrestlmania style. Caged match in Nejmeh square. 20 men go in, only one comes out. Compelte with costumes and wrestling monikers.
    – Hassan “The Turban” Nassrallah
    – Saad “Billion dollar man” Hariri
    – Michel “Napoelon” Aoun
    – Samir “The Doktor” Geagea
    – Suleiman “Junior” Frangieh
    – Walid “Macho Man” Jumblatt
    – Nabih “Maestro” Berri

    I’d love to read a Qnion piece on this :)

    Posted by bad vilbel | July 6, 2011, 4:31 pm
  47. Hi everyone,

    Very few are studying the genealogy of the shift in HA’s approach to its political stance.

    1) The pre-2005 period was basically foundational in situating HA as defender of Shia rights but also as defenders of justice for oppressed minorities in a feodal system. Nasrallah was succesfull in establishing an identity for HA that transcends its murky and dangerous origins (remember the Assassination waves of the mid to late eighties?) and that defines HA as a Lebanese movement to protect minorities and to question the sectarian and feodal system on place–thus the initial attraction of progressive and antifeodal elements on the left and on the right.

    2) if it is to be proven that HA was involved in the 2003-2006 assassinations, including the assassination of Hariri Sr., then this would indicate a shift in policy from consolidating one’s place in the political system at the margins to a desire to have more say and more control in political affairs. But that is quite a surprising shift and does not make sense considering the overall geocultural situation in the region (Iraq, Deacons in DC, etc.). It is quite possible that Mughnieh has drawn HA elements into a Syrian orchestrated campaign for shuffling regional power balances against HNA’s political strategy. The military involvement of HA, if confirmed, may have been coerced or was maybe a deliberate decision to destabilise the Hariri controlled regime in the hope of active involvement in shaping Lebanese political affairs. July 2006 would fit with this view as a test of the military organisational infrastructure of a party that wants to become a power broker.

    3) May 2008 marks the point of no return for HNA: while HA kept a low but proSyrian profile from 2005 until 2007, the alliance with GMA that was a remnant of the anti oligarchic strategy of HA’s political identity was not enough to provide immediate means of safeguarding the party’s military infrastructure. The concentrated attacks of Siniora and Co. compounded to revelations and more indications of possible HA involvement in the wave of assassinations and the instability within the Syrian intelligence apparatus, etc., prompted HA to resort to military show of force with a pinpoint attack on Jumblatt’s fiefdom to turn him.. The rest is history: tours de force shown in the immobilization of govt., the increase in regional relevance after the Doha accords, and finally the failed attempt at whitewashing any STL association of HA with Hariri’s assassination (due to non-regional factors) prompted to the takeover of the govt. in the hope of protecting, if not the military infrastructure of the party at least the credibility of the party’s identity as.constructed in the early years of the 21st century. The viability of the party’s existence is on the line, I.e., the construct of a non sectarian antifeodal and progressive movement that can ally itself with various groupings. This is the struggle that HA is fighting with the STL: HNA is not concerned with indictments as much as the representation of the party as a mercenary force in the hands of its benefactors or as a party of sectarian allegiance that does not hesitate to use force to eliminate threats (the image of the party in the 80s!)

    In conclusion, the shift in strategy of the HA in 2003-2005 is the mystery that needs to be explored and whatever decisions made then are driving the desperate struggle of HNA to save his party. Whoever committed the mistake of shifting the focus of the party’s identity from being primarily ideological to becoming primarily about military control will pay the price no matter the outcome of the STL saga. HNA may be covering up for his benefactors, or he maybe.covering for his own decisions; the success of the HA myth in legitimizing its existence is at issue here. The party should be looking for a replacement of HNA sooner rather than later if it is interested on its future viability as a political institution.

    Posted by parrhesia | July 6, 2011, 5:35 pm
  48. Since we have been going in circles for a few years, at best we are running on the spot, it is time to stress for the umpteenth time what appears to still be misunderstood by many.

    SHN and all the HA allies have chosen to oppose the STL on some of the least logical grounds. All ideas , no matter where and what they are about, will have supporters as well as opponents. That is the way it should be.
    What is unique to the current Lebanese standoff, which has been in effect for about 6 years, is the fact that both sides enjoy practically the same popular support. Each side has a perfectly loyal base that will blindly follow its leadership without any questions asked. It makes no difference what SHN says, he can count on the support of all FPMers, Maraada, Arslan, Amal and probably 90% of the Shia. The other side will also follow, maybe slightly less enthusiastically but equally blindly, the decisions of Al Mustaqbal leaders and other March 14 politicians.
    Since both sides are practically represent a relatively large segment of society then none of these two parties ever feels the need to listen to the other, to reevaluate or to compromise. Why should they? What Lebanon seems to be lacking is a substantial independent swing group that can force each of the other two groups to seek its support. Such support can be sought only by widening the appeal of the respective parties which implies more flexibility and less rigidity.
    Had this been the case then the HA group would not have stuck to its policy of opposing STL and yet be for it at the same time. Its an untenable position but one that creates no problems for a leadership that feels comfortable with its large base of support..
    The same logic applies to March 14 who have spent the last six years preoccupied in creating a bigger than life image of Rafic Hariri. This is not to suggest that a thorough investigation of his assassination is not called for but this is to suggest that statestmen and ststeswomen should be able to govern. and yet investigate a heinous political crime. The public will chose to sanctify individuals that are important to it without the need for a well orchestrated campaign built around ubiquitous photographs of the deceased and visits to his grave site.

    I am one of the Lebanese how is totally dejected by the attempts by HA and its allies to paint everyone and everything that is not in agreement with them as an Israeli agent. Being sanctimonious is the height of hypocrisy.Their continuous veiled attempts to push their religious, totalitarian agenda is no longer that veiled when their chief spokesperso , SHN, declares to the world, that he would prevent the state and any of its operatives from enforcing an international warrant. That is nothing short of being bombastic and maybe even drunk by power to dictate.

    But it is crucially important to understand clesrly that as much as individuals as myself, object to the HA ideology and rhetoric this should never ever be taken as an endorsement of March 14 who , in my opinion, are marginally less more acceptable but essentially jsut as much part of the problem as HA.

    So what does it mean if one is opposed to both parties? It means a lot. The future of Lebanon, and paradoxically I still believe that there is one; is not represented by any of these two alternatives. History moves forward, unfolds, through a dialectical process. I am very welcoming of the present day high tension between these two parrties since I firmly believe that none of them can represent the future aspirations of the young Lebanese. These two alliances represent a thesis and an antithesis and the resulting conflict between then would result in a synthesis that will represent for a time to come a more just, a more democratic and a more viable future. The efforts to establish,in any form, a faqih led society have failed and those that look toawrds the 1960’s for inspiration are equally at a loss of understanding that the root of our current dilemma is found in that which they are trying to resurrect.

    Posted by Ghassan Karam | July 6, 2011, 6:22 pm
  49. There really is no “mystery” here in HA’s actions, man.
    I wish people would stop overcomplicating this stuff with over the top analysis, trying to imbue mystery and questions where there are none.

    No offense to you personally. It’s a well written comment.

    But honestly…HA’s motives and actions have been quite clear since day 1. Everything they’ve done has almost always made perfect sense to me in the grander scheme of things. There is not much “mystery” there.

    – HA was founded by Iran, at a time when Khomeini’s ideology was to export his revolution to the rest of the ME.
    – Lebanon (along with Bahrain) is one of the few countries in the region with a substantial Shia population.
    – The Iranian revolution is a shia-centric ideology par excellence. Just like the French used the maronites because of their perceived affinity to that group, so would Iran use the Shia of Lebanon.
    – The rest is history. When you put forward a group that is well armed and funded, and that has popular support due to the aforementioned affinity (there is no denying that HA has always been quite popular among Lebanon’s shia), you start gaining power.
    – Once you start gaining power for yourself and your constituents, you fall into the trappings of said power (which has been well documented throughout history). No one gains power and then gives it up willingly.
    – HA is now in a position where they have grown in power (compared to the Iranian founded 1982 group) and will do whatever it can to stay in power in one way or another.

    It’s the oldest story in history. There really is NO mystery here.

    Posted by Bad Vilbel | July 6, 2011, 6:24 pm
  50. I am sure that many of you have already seen this but it is so “funny/Sad” that I could not take chances that some might not have heard it:

    “من يريد التكلم فليتكلم لكننا لن نسمع”.

    For the benefit of those that do not read Arabic:: Whoever wants to speak , let them go ahead but we will not listen”

    Isn’t this a sophomoric statement that could have been lifted out of a comedic sketch?

    Posted by Ghassan Karam | July 6, 2011, 6:54 pm
  51. No. Actually it’s a childish statement lifted out of a 5-year old’s playbook.

    You know, the part where the kid throws a tantrum, puts his hands over his ears and goes “LALALALALALAALA” real loud?

    Yeah. That.

    Posted by Bad Vilbel | July 6, 2011, 6:56 pm
  52. Ghassan;

    Let me guess; was it Raad or Mousawi? They are dirty looking reprehensible lieutenants of the HA family of mafiosi.

    Posted by danny | July 6, 2011, 7:58 pm
  53. Danny,
    Right again. It was Nawaf Al Mousawi. At times they all sound alike.:-)

    Posted by Ghassan Karam | July 6, 2011, 8:03 pm
  54. Too much to catch up on but parrhesia @248 caught my attention.
    For all the academic analysis of the management and decision making at HA, I would still like to hear how they have renounced (if indeed they have) their longing for Wilayat-al-Faqih as SHN used to advocate in the early years. I have been often lectured that these were declarations for a given time and now things are different but I remain unconvinced. For such shift to be believable it has to be decided upon and consecrated into the constitution of the party. Coupled with such renunciation must the abandonment of weapons and state-within-the-state structure in everything from telecommunications to real estate encroachment to unilateral declarations challenging the authority of the state.
    If HA has developed faith in democracy then the sheer number of their followers and allies should be more than a guarantee of their right and of their say in the operation of the state without any of the weapons or other illegalities they espouse.
    Furthermore, if elements of HA are proven, in an international court of law, in collusion with elements of the Syrian regime, to have conducted the assassinations of R. Hariri and the many others who followed, then a price has to be paid, politically and otherwise. All obfuscation aimed at aborting the international court of law are, alas, more indications of guilt than genuine indignation or revelations of conspiracies against the “Resistance.”
    There is no more “Resistance.” The deterrence by the IDF is absolute and the weapons of HA actually diminish the sovereignty of the country by giving Israel excuses to conduct their surveillance and operations in violations of Lebanon’s air space. The party acts as a bully and does not hesitate to use its force against its fellow citizens. There is, however, one good use for the HA weapons, if they choose to exercise it. Let them go and police the Palestinian refugee camps, help those camps obtain good medical care institutions, and prepare them for integration into Lebanese society. As much as every politicians shouts about the unanimity of the refusal to nationalize the Palestinian refugees, the facts on the ground speak differently. For sure, no one will force any Palestinian to accept Lebanese citizenship. However, it is high time that those who want it be offered this option.

    Posted by Honest Patriot | July 6, 2011, 8:36 pm
  55. Here’s evidence for one of my points above:

    from the article quoted by another commentator further up:

    http://www.dailystar.com.lb/News/Politics/2011/Jul-06/Nasrallah-Justice-in-Hariri-case-key-to-sustained-stability.ashx#axzz1RKn7YVfV

    Posted by Honest Patriot | July 6, 2011, 8:38 pm
  56. I am one of the Lebanese how is totally dejected by the attempts by HA and its allies to paint everyone and everything that is not in agreement with them as an Israeli agent.

    GK,

    Not to worry. The Syrian Baathists are doing exactly the same thing (see Syria Comment).

    Aren’t we Jews useful?

    Hitler would be proud. (sarcasm intended)

    Posted by Akbar Palace | July 6, 2011, 8:44 pm
  57. QN: I think it’s time to pull the plug NewZ

    Meanwhile a great number of criminals from the most infamous Zioconned White House Murder INC, walk the streets or hide in their homes without a dime of our hard earned taxpayer money being spent to investigate them. The perpetrators of dozens of assassinations in the Levant since January 24th 2002…., and the horrendous inside job of 9/11

    HK,

    Shirley, you must be joking. How much tax-payer money do you think it took to do the 9-11 Commission report and study the WTC wreckage?

    http://www.9-11commission.gov/report/911Report.pdf

    Posted by Akbar Palace | July 6, 2011, 9:10 pm
  58. AP, are you having fun with HK, or are you really THAT slow in figuring people out?

    Posted by Honest Patriot | July 6, 2011, 10:02 pm
  59. HP,

    No, and yes, I’m slow.

    All this time I thought HK’s spam was canned meat.

    Posted by Akbar Palace | July 6, 2011, 10:22 pm
  60. 7aram 3aleik ya HP. Is that what I’ve become… a commentator. Just another commentator. :P.

    That article I think is an extremely important one. For it starts to scratch the confident veneer of the numerous ClAouns and other Clowns who happen to be anti-STL and who frequent QN.

    For a long time, I have been asking whether the obstructionist attitude was a testament to idiocy or something more nefarious.

    And unfortunately, more and more, I am beginning to believe it is the latter.

    When it comes out of the Sayyed’s mouth himself, that “Justice” has to be served, while the Contexts, the Usamas, the JoeMs, the Question Marks advance such ridiculous notions such as:

    – The crime will never be solved. We have to wait for the murder’s autobiography to hit the Borders/Chapters/Virgin bookstore.

    – That HA should not be morally obligated to assist in disclosing the truth, etc.

    Then we see that even they are at odds with the grand Sayyed.

    Because the truth is (and this truth has been repeated ad nauseum by the likes of BV, Danny, Iceman, etc)….

    Hassan Nasrallah gets it. He knows what is at stake. And truly it is all about this STL. About the optics. About uncovering the “truth”. And the realization that Hizballah can no longer (as QN has so eloquently summarized it) rely on the old business model. It’s intelligence apparatus is far too entrenched in the state. And yes, that means there are expectations of it today that it cannot afford to continue to be a secretive organization.

    Posted by Gabriel | July 7, 2011, 12:07 am
  61. Sadly qifa, your blog used to be a place where actual, informative discussions took place between the commentators rather then the damagogy that takes place now. You used to have commentators from both sides of the political divide whereas now it seems the discussion is dominated by one side only.

    You censor HK (whom I dont agree with on everything) but these gems from peter are allright?

    “R2D2 Says:
    July 3, 2011 at 5:54 pm
    United against whom ya Wael?

    Is Nabatiyeh or the bay of Jounieh an example of what “true” Lebanese will do with the land given free reign?

    134. R2D2 Says:

    July 3, 2011 at 6:18 pm
    I don’t think that a sword carrying, self bloodying Ashoura celebration will be a major attraction for tourists in any country.”

    and don’t get me started on the way danny attacks anyone he disagrees with personally.

    I think the reason why long time contributers like Mo and others who used to comment here have stopped is because whenever they made well thought arguments, instead of responding to the points made in their posts, they where mocked and their personal beliefs ridiculed without answering queries.

    I bid this once wonderful blog adieu

    (Long time reader, I dont comment because as you can probably see from the post my english is very rusty)

    Posted by Jnoubi | July 7, 2011, 4:40 am
  62. Dear Gaby, sorry, no offense intended. After all, we are all commentators here, me included. It’s not an excuse but I had scanned the posts quickly and parrhesia’s post caught my eye, like I wrote. Except for that #248, my gray matter wasn’t logging comment authors, although I did open the article you posted in a new tab. I had forgotten what comment that open tab came from. I appreciate and agree with both your post on the link and your comment clarifying it and reprinting me. I stand corrected and appropriately chastised ;-)
    ..and, to the extent that imitation is the best form of flattery, my reposting of your link represents a subtle acknowledgement and compliment.
    Ya3ish Gabe, Ya3ish, Ya3ish, Ya3ish.

    Posted by honestpatriot | July 7, 2011, 6:07 am
  63. Jnoubi#262.

    Dude, is this a “Don’t Cry for me Argentina” moment?

    You barely post here. Why this big production to bid your final adieu?

    What is it with the Arab world? We have Soltans of Offence galore. One moment, we have an “Iceman” who expects people to grovel to him and apologize profusely for offence caused to him. Now we have a Jnoubi bothered that some “Mo’s” personal beliefs were mocked.

    As a parting gift, Jnoubi, rest assured, your english appears not to be rusty at all.

    Posted by Gabriel | July 7, 2011, 8:58 am
  64. And the Strian butcherry goes on. A Syrian who dared sing about the need for Bashar, Maher and the Ba’ath to leave was brutally killed by the state police.

    Please take a listen to the song. This regime has gone too far in its repression. It has to go.

    http://www.facebook.com/video/video.php?v=1965733698254

    Posted by Ghassan Karam | July 7, 2011, 10:46 am
  65. GK,

    In case you missed this post from SC. The video is so powerful. Finally, CNN doing its job.

    ABOALI said:

    an excellent and extraordinary report from Arwa Damon of CNN in Damascus. I guess this is the reason the regime wouldn’t allow international press, so that truth doesn’t get out.

    http://edition.cnn.com/video/#/video/world/2011/07/07/damon.syria.doctors.cnn?iref=allsearch

    Posted by AIG | July 7, 2011, 11:26 am
  66. Thanks AIG. I had missed this one.

    Posted by Ghassan Karam | July 7, 2011, 12:09 pm
  67. HP @255-

    I can now see how effective AIG’s constant meddling on this blog has been. So, with one stroke of the brush Lebanon, unilaterally, lays down its arms, takes care of its Palestinian problem, forgets about its occupied land or returning (or at least compensating) refugees, and absolves Israel of any responsibility..I can tell you that you are the only kind of Arab the Israelis like…but hey, while you’re at it, you may want to suggest to a likewise brilliant solution to the Palestinians in Palestine too (after all they have been similarly deterred as well)….

    Posted by Saint | July 7, 2011, 12:59 pm
  68. I actually feel that Jnoubi has a point (and I hope that s/he will not stop reading or commenting.)

    While I’m not planning on moderating people any more stringently than I already do (which is hardly at all), I’m not happy with the fact that the regular commenters here are far more homogenous, politically speaking, than they have been at other times.

    That’s not to say that I don’t appreciate the conversations that do take place, I just think that the Internet has a way of turning us all into caricatures of ourselves at times.

    Posted by Qifa Nabki | July 7, 2011, 1:45 pm
  69. I frankly don’t think we’re homogenous at all. We have almost as many “anti-HA” as we have “Pro-HA” types around here (i use those labels for simpicity’s sake. Obviously, we are not defined strictly by our views towards HA).

    I think the appearance of homogeneity is more a result of the fact that we’ve all stated our positions so many times over and over that every discussion sounds like a broken record.

    There is also not much discourse to be had at the moment. Let’s be honest. Aside from the “predict what happens next” game, there really isn’t a whole lot happening in Lebanon. And most of us (like it or not) are pretty entrenched in our positions. No one’s going to change anyone’s mind. So we just repeat ourselves ad nauseam.

    Posted by Bad Vilbel | July 7, 2011, 1:51 pm
  70. Saint,

    What is your proposal please?

    Posted by Honest Patriot | July 7, 2011, 2:54 pm
  71. Eternal warfare!

    Posted by Bad Vilbel | July 7, 2011, 3:01 pm
  72. BV,

    Is that a new video game? When is it coming out?

    Posted by AIG | July 7, 2011, 4:00 pm
  73. It’s been out since 1948 :)

    Posted by Bad Vilbel | July 7, 2011, 4:44 pm
  74. I’ll have some thoughts about the speech either later today or tomorrow,

    Ya Qifa Nabki,

    I’m still waiting, eagerly I may add, for your thoughts! Hopefully they would include what you think about the credibility issue.

    Posted by Badr | July 7, 2011, 5:02 pm
  75. Sorry Badr, I’ve been incredibly busy. I hope to get to it soon enough.

    Posted by Qifa Nabki | July 7, 2011, 5:10 pm
  76. Saint, waiting for your proposal and will debate you if you use logic, objectivity, civility, and human respect and compassion.

    Posted by honestpatriot | July 7, 2011, 5:30 pm
  77. An autopsy of the Syrian predicament by the International Crisis Group is out.

    Posted by mj | July 7, 2011, 6:13 pm
  78. It is with lots of trepidation that I make the following brief comment. I have known , through cyberspace, many on this space for a long period of time. Actually I do have a strong feeling of friendship with many, although we have never met and maybe never will.
    Diversity is arguably the single most important trait in a vibrant and healthy eco system. The same is true for democracy or any other societal makeup. That is one reason why one party states are always to be shunned.
    One rule that I usually try to abide by is to never be judgmental. I hope that no one misunderstands this post by thinking that it is judgmental since that is the farthest thing in my mind.
    For those who might have noted the comments about the “quality” of the commentary on this blog you would have noted that two were critical but one was extremely positive. That is diversity for you:-)
    If anyone wishes to go back to the archives then I am sure that you will find that I might have been one of the first to lament what has happened to QN. I still stand by it. Both Joe m and Jnoubi have a point and it is not only about homogeneity. I think self criticism is essential for growth and so the question that I invite everyone to ask is: Why does one visit a blog? Ultimately it is an attempt to learn but also to share with others points of view that are important to that specific space.That is why respect for the others is essential and posts are expected to be , most of the time, reasonably well thought out. There ought be no tolerance for personal attacks. Ideas could be demolished but the integrity of the bearer of any ideas is not to be an issue. It never matters anyway. Another distraction in any blog is the unwelcome chore of having to sift through material that is not even tangentially related to the purpose for which that space was initially set up. That simply becomes spam and it often is.
    And allow me to close by saying that the success of a space is not to be judged by the number of comments but by what the comments have to say. I for one, think that this space will be healthier and more productive if it contains less spam, avoids ad hominemsand is less interested in quantity rather than quality. I do believe that the discussion will be much more fruitful if Joe m, Mo, Jnoubi (who I suspect is mo :-)) RedLeb and others would join the conversation.

    Posted by Ghassan Karam | July 7, 2011, 6:31 pm
  79. Very well said, Ghassan.

    I don’t think that things have gotten anywhere near as bad as the worst days of Syria Comment (which has had its very divisive moments) or, God forbid, the Aounist forum which has gotten to be a snake pit…

    But I do think that folks can be too quick to gang up on some people who have a different perspective on things.

    This blog is at its best when there’s a lively and diverse mix of readers debating the finer points of a post and keeping each other on their toes.

    Posted by Qifa Nabki | July 7, 2011, 6:55 pm
  80. Let me just say one more thing.

    Many of you have complained about certain commenters who bombard this forum with unrelated diatribes and silly/repetitive comments that are not meant to lead to any kind of discussion.

    Fair enough.

    I want to point out, though, that moderating a discussion board is a very tricky business. Ad hominem attacks, crude language, and hate speech are easy enough to police but how does one establish an objective definition of “unrelated” or “pointless” contributions?

    As I peruse the comments on this thread, there are plenty that could qualify as “spam”, depending on who is moderating. HK is a regular and flagrant violator, but danny has also outdone himself over the past few days as well. Would you like me to ban them both? What about Gabriel? Or 3issa? If I had nothing better to do with my time, I could easily find a nice stack of stupid and pointless comments by practically any of the regulars on this forum.

    As it turns out, I do have plenty to do — given that I have two kids, a dissertation to finish, a new research project to launch, and a blog to write — so I really don’t want to have to start moderating obsessively.

    For now, I’m just going to ask you all to behave and be smart. If things don’t take care of themselves, I’ll have to start deleting comments on a more regular basis.

    As you were.

    Posted by Qifa Nabki | July 7, 2011, 7:24 pm
  81. Me! Moi! A spammer!

    None of my posts are pointless. They are all quite Point-full!

    Ghassan, with all due respect, allow me to take a slight exception to what is otherwise a well written point.

    First, we are by no means a monochromatic group.

    Second, I take exception when others deign to define what is respectful conversation. (For example, I find the insinuation that jnoubi makes that QN ought to censor his forum quite disrespectful… But ought not to be censored just because it offends me.

    Third… Mo or Joe or Jnoubi or or or are, as far as I can tell not here to give and take. If they were, they would at least be amenable to playing the Hypothetical game. The what if … And how does this affect … Game.

    When someone is not willing to look at all sides of an argument and consider their position relative to all sides (what you call self-reflection) it simply means they are not here to engage and learn and teach, but to be demagogues.

    Posted by Gabriel | July 7, 2011, 8:17 pm
  82. Dude QN… I just went over the past few postings…Wow? Where did I spam? It was a back and forth on topic with a few of the commentators (maybe 10 out of 280 dude). Or is it that I have been blunt and not as eloquent as ?????…

    It seems HA sympathizers just love to complain and whine wherever they can’t get a logical point across. I enjoy learning and understanding different points of view, However; related to this thread I asked a simple question and off course I was called a fascist or Nazi; bla bla…

    Simple question again to HA apologists (regarding the indictments). Is there anywhere on EARTH (except Qum that is) whereas they think HA can get a fair trial? …Or do they think their divine party can kill and escape justice by mafiosi tactics.

    Jnoubi, Mo or usedtopost here was a good debater and if your are his twin (according to Gus) grow some thick skin and answer the simple question.

    Gaby stop spamming. Welcome to JK Montessori school

    Posted by danny | July 7, 2011, 9:09 pm
  83. Many have often given the leaks as an example of the politicization of the STL. Did you happen to notice that yesterday Nawaf Moussawi , inadvertantly, demolished that argument when he accused Wissam Al Hassan of being the source of the latest leaks about the indictments:-). If that is true, then how can the leak be tied into the STL. Last time I checked Mr. Hassan was an emplyee of the Lebanese state.

    Posted by ghassan karam | July 7, 2011, 9:29 pm
  84. Ghassan,

    If I am not wrong; Wissam al Hassan was Hariri’s appointee. Also; he came under scrutiny regarding the role he played re: Eid’s assassination (I think according to CBC doc??). I really don’t think what to make out of this double agent. :D

    Posted by danny | July 7, 2011, 9:41 pm
  85. Ana Khalas, albi t7atam…

    I think I will drown myself as Iceman suggested and never ever and I mean ever come to QN ever again.

    It won’t be easy… You’ll think its strange
    Don’t cry for me HP or Danny or QN
    The truth is I’ll never leave you!
    I’ll miss you and hope you miss me!!!!!!!!

    Posted by Gabriel | July 7, 2011, 10:50 pm
  86. Nice to be remembered and everything but I am not Jnoubi (although am a Jnoubi…).

    I did stop posting here for the very reasons he expresses and more though and I warned QN not many moons ago that the blog was in danger of becoming another Blacksmiths site (and many didnt like that). The fact is that not only was the “room” to debate getting smaller and smaller but my goals on debating here was fruitless. My goals were not to change anyone’s mind (like that’s happened on any blog or forum in the history of the interwebs) but to
    a. Understand the thinking of people on the other side of the political divide

    and

    b. Try and explain my thoughts and beliefs to those that may wish to do the same.

    It soon became apparent that my second goal was pointless; Not because anyone on here is not interested but because I could spend precious time debating a point or more with some, reach a conclusion or understanding and then have that very same point brought up again in the very next post. I’m not trying to insinuate anything about anyone; Just why I stopped entering debates.

    I continue to visit and read so I can achieve my first goals nevertheless.

    Posted by mo | July 8, 2011, 5:31 am
  87. Oh and Qifa,

    “When X admits that he will not embark upon a certain course of action because of the likely response of Y, he is in effect admitting that he has been deterred by Y.”

    What if X doesn’t admit it but everyone knows that he is deterred by the likely response of Y. it is still deterrence?

    Posted by mo | July 8, 2011, 9:54 am
  88. I insist, the last report on Syria by the ICG, is a must read. If you don’t believe me, EHSANI2 in SC thinks so too:

    “The ICG full report is one of the finest documents produced on this crisis. It is very detailed, broad, thorough and devastating”.

    Posted by mj | July 8, 2011, 10:08 am
  89. Danny

    You asked, so I’ll tell you: Your comments #4, #14, #26, #152, #253 sound a lot like spam to me. They are either insulting to other commenters or they make disparaging comments about the appearance of certain politicians (“fat”, “dirty”, etc.) All in all, pointless and offensive and not particularly conducive to serious discussion. I’m done talking about this now.

    Posted by Qifa Nabki | July 8, 2011, 10:18 am
  90. Mo,

    I’m very glad to see that you’re still reading, and I encourage you not to just lurk but keep participating.

    As for your question about deterrence… I guess it depends on what you mean by “everyone knows X is deterred by the likely response of Y.”

    If it is truly a clear and uncontested fact that X is being deterred by Y, then you wouldn’t need X’s statement to prove it. In the case of my discussion with Question Marks, it was certainly not clear and uncontestable that Hizbullah was being deterred (from Question Marks’ perspective), so that’s why I brought up Nasrallah’s statement.

    From my perspective, on the other hand, it is obvious that Hizbullah has been successfully deterred over the past five years from launching offensive resistance operations against Israel.

    Posted by Qifa Nabki | July 8, 2011, 10:25 am
  91. What if Hizballah conducts a border operation tomorrow or next month? Can we say that they were never really deterred at all? That they were just lying low, which is different from being “deterred”?

    What if Hizballah conducts an operation, and Israel does not respond, why does one take HNA’s statement that “had I known I would not have conducted this operation” as a statement of admission of “deterrence”.

    These conversations are frivolous, off-topic, and not particularly instructive. Dissecting the proper definition of “Deterrence” is just a recipe for time wasting, and it is only a mirage of “intellectual engagement”.

    The topic here is the Tribunal, and Hassan’s reaction to it.

    So if people want to pretend they are “purists”, please stick to the topic. Especially, the last statement made by Hassan… that “Justice” has to prevail in the case, and that Hizballah does not want a Free pass that does not serve ultimate justice to the perpetrators of the crime.

    Those who see eye-to-eye with Hassan, please contribute something useful. Have there been any proposal, plans put forward by the Aouni or Hizbi camps on how precisely they plan to achieve this in an honest and transparent.

    If such a plan exists, I have yet to read of one.

    Posted by Gabriel | July 8, 2011, 10:48 am
  92. mj,
    I have read the ICG report on Syria and I agree that overall it is well done .
    But I do find it somehow troubling that the ICG and many others, almost everyone, provides an analysis of the Syrian uprising on the basis that things could have been different had the regime done X, Y and Z.
    Yes and No. Certain actions by the regime could have helped contain the current crisis for a while but No measure could have prevented an eventual blow up.
    The Syrian regime, or anyother regimes like it, are built on a structural flaw. They assume that individuals in society are not important. Their personal liberty, freedom and right to self expression are negotiable. Furthermore they assume that the one party system always knows what is good for the community and will always be able to deliver the goods. This is the farthest thing away from the truth.A one party system is built on taking away from others the right to disagree , to be different, to think outside the box. It is a system that stiffles creativity in all fields,
    I find it equally abhorrent when the report makes implicit references to an enlightened dictatorship. What the authors fail to understand correctly is that a dictatorship is a dictatorship whether enlightened or not. It is true that citizens might postpone their uprising when confronted with an elightened dictator but what guarantees do they have about the next dictator or about the enlightened changing his mind? Absolutely none. That is one reason that a number of studies have come to the conclusion that the Soviet Union fell essentially for moral reasons. There comes a point when citizens are fed up with the lies, the pretense, the lack of freedom to express themselves. I strongly believe that Syria is at that stage. Many have had enough and they cannot take it any longer. No measure or series of measures can postpone the inevitable. Authoritarianism and totalitarianism must go.

    Posted by Ghassan Karam | July 8, 2011, 10:56 am
  93. BTW.

    “Plan” in above post is something concrete. A series of steps proposed to be taken to achieve the goal. Not a reference to a 3 hour speech of talking points. There’s a lot of that in the Arab world.

    Posted by Gabriel | July 8, 2011, 10:57 am
  94. Gabriel,
    Hezbollah has just as much right as any other group to believe in any political and religious philosophy as it chooses. The major schism , if we can cal it that, in the domestic Lebanese political scene is not about HA’s political and religious views, not yet, but it is about their military wing that has ammased caches that are far deadlier than those of the state and that has established a state within a state ( 2006 war, shooting down a Lebanese army helicopter, its own telecom network, inability of the state to function in certain areas…)
    The major and possibly only rationale used by HA and its allies for this illegal bearing of arms is the fact that such weapons have “protected” the state from invasion i.e. the military wing has deterred and continues to deter the enemy. In that case I would take strong exception to your statement that deterrence is peripheral. I think that deterrence is the only foundation on which the case for the military wing rests.

    Posted by Ghassan Karam | July 8, 2011, 11:12 am
  95. mo, Iceman, Saint, Jnoubi,

    Come back! Ignore those who are uncivil or ramble on. Without full-time policing (not in the cards) these will inevitably happen.
    Many others here are interested, as mo is, in the exchange and debate, both to better understand the other point of view and to be understood.
    I myself have a particularly keen interest in seeing those arguments in favor of the Palestinians, in their conflict with Israel, in favor for effective and peaceful resolution, in favor of removing the stigma that is associated with “Arab” and “Muslim // sometime equated with Msulim extremist” in the Western world and many other “worlds” dispelled by the pronouncements and actions of the truly patriotic Arabs, the truly devout Muslims, etc.
    In my opinion, the “public relations” face of those who want to put forth the positive images is dismal. In my opinion, folks like you (mo, etc.) are the kernel of what this face should be.
    Retrenching does nothing. (Not that a blog discussion will, but it’s better than nothing).
    I, like many, am an admirer of Uqab Saqr. To many, he’s arguing the wrong case. Fine. But let’s have someone as eloquent, as civil, as smart, argue the other point of view. Start with blogs and graduate to the indispensable world media.
    Writing off the US media as eternally biased is cowardly and defeatist and wrong.
    To those who lament the “zionist” or “Jewish” domination of America, rather than lamenting, learn how these folks earned their privileges in the political attitudes of America, government AND people, and use persuasion and actions to counter it.
    Otherwise, retrenching will simply perpetuate the current abysmal situation relating to these relationships and actions.

    Yalla, shu bikun ya jameh3a, put a mezze on and debate. If you’re offended by someone, ignore it or flag it. I’ll be the first to condemn unfair practices and support you (as I’ve done sometimes to those who started to steer the blog towards obscene language — and was called “Church Lady” for it, also called “Mother Superior”). Come my children, Mother Superior will protect you ;-)

    Posted by honestpatriot | July 8, 2011, 11:24 am
  96. It’s confession time lol.:D

    Posted by danny | July 8, 2011, 1:02 pm
  97. Ya Ghassan, Ya Habibi,

    I’m not sure what your point is. I have already given 2 clear examples to support the inanity of a discussion on deterrence.

    Here’s another. One can argue that HA’s arms have in fact prevented Israel from contemplating a longer term “occupation” of Lebanese territory in order to weed out terrorists. (According to QN’s rather facile definition of what deterrence is- all this talk about X and Y and Z).

    Even if one were to expect the core of QN’s point, that HA has in fact been “deterred”. The next question becomes, what has deterred them… Is it the IDF? Or is it the court of public opinion in Lebanon? The court that deemed it acceptable for HA to use “Defense” to support their resistance against Israel when Lebanese territory was occupied. But a court that has seemed less open to granting them that lattitude when the area under question was the Shebaa and it was contested by the UN. And a court that seems less open when the violations under discussion are Israeli overflights.

    So if Hizballah was in fact actually “deterred”, then I would say the deterrence is due to internal Lebanese politics and not the IDF.

    So I maintain my position, this discussion on “deterrence” is frivolous, and is intended to veer the conversation from more important topics to avoid talking about the more important topics.

    Any argument on HA’s arms should be based on two things:

    1) The right or lack thereof to bear arms
    2) The equality aspect that only “certain” people can in fact bear arms.

    Posted by Gabriel | July 8, 2011, 1:31 pm
  98. Even if one were to expect the core of QN’s point

    should have read

    Even if one were to accept the core of QN’s point

    Posted by Gabriel | July 8, 2011, 1:33 pm
  99. Gabriel,
    You are not sure that you understand my point because we are talking about two different things:-)
    I am not addressing the merits of the concept of deterrence and whether it should be applied or not; which I think is your position. The only point that I was making is that deterrence IS NOT a peripheral isue since it is the concept on which the rationale for Hezbollah weapons is based.
    If it is a basic concept in arguing for the need to have weapons then one should look at the merits/demerits of the concept. I happen to think that even if one is to accept that the argument for weapons is based on deterrence I do not think that HA has succeededin that regard and therefore might as well dismantle its military structure or at least merge it into that of the Lebanese army. (On a tangential issue I am not sure that Lebanon can afford to maintain the HA weapons and their related personnel.)

    Posted by Ghassan Karam | July 8, 2011, 2:07 pm
  100. Ya Ghassan, (posted previously but got erased!)

    I don’t think we are talking about different things, we just couldn’t disagree more on this point! (Which is perhaps further testament that there is nothing monochromatic about this grouping).

    My point again, is not to discuss the merit of deterrence. I am not taking a position on Hizballah, or their weapons. And even if I were to take such a position, it would have to be solely based on the fact that it is not equal to allow only one group a privilege of bearing arms.

    I think your point is that the Pro-Hizballah being armed group are constantly referring to the deterrence argument, hence you find reason to argue with them based on that. My point is that this is a frivolous discussion. And I presented several reasons to support the argument.

    In fact, I think that for those who wish to oppose the armament of HA based on the Deterrence argument, I think they would lose the rational argument. (See 3rd example provided).

    I don’t think it is any wonder why those who are proponents of an armed HA stick to this argument, and keep bleating about it. And in my humblest view, it is to obfuscate, to confuse and to do everything possible BUT debate more important issues.

    If there is any doubt about the correctness of my reading of the situation, consider this simple fact:

    After what is supposedly a long sojourn of secretly reading QN’s forums without actually posting, Mo and Jnoubi, have decided to make a comeback. The latter, in true Diva Dalida Style, came only to make a splash of an exit. And the former- of all topics that could be brought up- decided to engage QN on the X, Y, Z example of deterrence.

    I mean really.

    I’ll take Danny’s talk of Scat any day over a pretense at intellectual engagement.

    Posted by Gabriel | July 8, 2011, 4:02 pm
  101. This is NOT spam….

    But all this Diva talk just got me going… (Enjoy)

    Posted by Gabriel | July 8, 2011, 4:14 pm
  102. I haven’t been to Teheran in four years. However, I just met my former Iranian distributor in Shanghai.

    He has moved his family (wife and two daughters) to Istanbul. Apparently there is plan in place to segregate boys and girls in schools across Iran as well as providing a different curriculum for boys and girls in schools there. That was just the tip of the iceberg that made him decide that his girls (5 and 7 years old) would be better off getting an education in Turkey as this seems to be the only place Iranians can reside in today.

    He has tried everything to get his family to move to Dubai, where he owns a business in a free zone that he can only operate out of as long as my name is attached to it, even though I have zero financial interest in it whatsoever today. The Dubai authorities have refused to transfer the shares in my name in that operation to either his wife or his UK bearing citizenship brother.

    I am but a Lebanese passport holder.

    What future do Sayed Hassan and that valiant Maronite General exactly envision for my continuing to be obliged to bear it in the wider world today?

    Just pondering along with some of the Lebanese bearing passport holders on this blog.

    Posted by R2D2 | July 8, 2011, 5:10 pm
  103. Oh, and least I forget to mention an important point …

    His father is a retired Iranian governmental nuclear engineer and his mother a former government employee.

    Posted by R2D2 | July 8, 2011, 5:23 pm
  104. And I am truly NOT sorry for being pretty much insensitive and intolerant towards anyone’s religious hocus pocus garbage beliefs on this blog.

    I am pretty tired of having had to deal with that utter hypocrisy in Lebanon and the Arab world for most of my adult life.

    There are 1.3 billion Chinese with $3Trilllion in foreign reserves that don’t give a hoot about what all the fuss about Christ, Moses and Mohammed is all about … whatsoever!

    The reason for that is simple.

    They simply didn’t buy that an almighty “God” needed a day of rest in the week to create the world.

    Go figure …

    Posted by R2D2 | July 8, 2011, 6:01 pm
  105. R2D2,
    According to what I have read what you mention is the latest area of confrontation between Ahmadinajjad and the Grand Ayatollah for segregating the sexes at the universities. I did not know that they had planned the segregation to start at earlier levels but I guess if they object to university integration then it is ;logical to start segregation at an earlier stage.
    What I find paradoxical about this is that Ayatollah Khomeini had said at one time that it is allright for two 9 year old to indulge in mutta’a without telling their parents. Go figure.

    Gabriel,
    Am I the only Lebanese who has not heard of Bassem Feghali :-) Is he popular?

    Posted by Ghassan Karam | July 8, 2011, 6:09 pm
  106. Gabriel;

    Back handed complement of blatant insult lol.

    Warning: This is NOT a spam…
    “Simple question again to HA apologists (regarding the indictments). Is there anywhere on EARTH (except Qum that is) whereas they think HA can get a fair trial?”

    Would anyone answer? Or is this the political correctness or fear of offending a sect or another that no one has been able to answer! My belief is that HA has been behind numerous assassinations and so does the evidence with STL. Why is no one asking for justice and buying into this utter nonsense?

    ghassan; Ha does not have separate “wings” (please refer to Qassem’s answer to the Brits). They are governed from top down. The Top being Khameini (head of W of F) and his surrogate in Lebanon; the Supreme Leader Hassan Nassrallah.

    All the eloquent spins won’t get you anywhere.

    Posted by danny | July 8, 2011, 6:10 pm
  107. Danny, 5 Our Father and 10 Hail Mary

    Posted by honestpatriot | July 8, 2011, 6:18 pm
  108. Ghassan…

    LoL. If it’s any consolation, I only learned about him about 3 or so months ago. So you’re not far behind.

    Posted by Gabriel | July 8, 2011, 6:30 pm
  109. Danny,

    Anyone who incorporates the term “scatological” to a discussion deserves special credit, not admonishment. Between QN and HP, we’ll be on our knees begging some Lord or another for forgiveness.

    On a more serious note (and I will repeat this for the millionth time). There is a group of people who seem to be completely disinterested in finding out the truth. They have slung every last excuse to support that position.

    For those not out there to hide something, but who support that group in their anti-STL position. The question is: Does this obstructionist attitude not bother them?

    Posted by Gabriel | July 8, 2011, 6:58 pm
  110. You guys are missing all the fun. Check out Syria Commnt.

    AIG is in with both feet! We’ve gone from boiling to super-heated steam…

    Posted by Akbar Palace | July 8, 2011, 7:14 pm
  111. There’s a new post.

    Posted by Qifa Nabki | July 8, 2011, 8:40 pm
  112. The Noe Doctrine will never go anywhere since it is built on the false expectation that one can entice a regime or a party to reform itself into its nagation. I have made this argument repeatedly over the past 3 months in connection to Syria and I have been making it for years in connection to HA.
    I do not want to belabour the issue but Nicholas Noe is confusing a small marginal cosmetic change with a genuine real transformation. I am suggesting the the first is doable but is meaningless while the latter is an impossibility since it does require a paradigm shift. Such major shifts can periodicaaly take place but once they do they are the result of a revoultionary change and not an evolutionary one.
    The Noe Doctrine will never deliver on its promises since it stands on moving sand. It is a misguided policy.

    Posted by Ghassan Karam | July 8, 2011, 9:01 pm

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