Hezbollah, Lebanon, March 14, Syria

Syria: Conveniently Vulnerable Once Again?

A few days ago, the prosecutor of the Special Tribunal for Lebanon, Daniel Bellemare, filed an amended indictment in the investigation of the 2005 murder of Rafiq al-Hariri. The only details reported about the new indictment were that it contained “substantive new elements,” which is what passes for breaking news on the STL front.

Today, however, two news stories in Lebanese media outlets (Naharnet and as-Safir) quoted anonymous European officials in The Hague who provided salacious new details about the contents of the amended indictment. According to Naharnet‘s source, Bellemare now has new evidence of Syrian complicity in the Hariri murder, which was made available to him by Syrian witnesses who defected to The Hague. The report in as-Safir discusses negotiations between the STL and French intelligence, part of an alleged effort to reach “the Syrian masterminds” behind the crime.

I don’t think I’m the only one who finds this latest twist in the Hariri saga to be more than a little far-fetched, or at least worthy of suspicion. Let’s point out the obvious:

  1. Witness testimony in a case like this is highly problematic, when you consider the likely number of layers between those who commissioned the crime and those who committed it. Unless the “witnesses” in the case are extremly high up the chain of command, it seems extremely unlikely that they could finger anyone in the Syrian government.
  2. But let’s say they could. Shouldn’t we regard the fact of their defection to The Hague as slightly problematic? This case has already been plagued by the credibility problems in witness testimony (cf. Zuhayr al-Siddiq and Husam Husam). How trustworthy is a regime defector unless he/she can furnish hard evidence of a plot (evidence which is exceedingly difficult to come by in a case like this).
  3. Finally, who are Naharnet’s sources? There is no precedent for a leak of this kind being handed to a Lebanese media outlet, one which does not have nearly the same visibility on the international scene as a publication like Der Spiegel, Le Figaro, or CBC (who carried the previous leaks).

The STL’s opponents in Lebanon are going to benefit from this latest press report. Given that most people in Lebanon already believe that the STL is politicized to some degree or another, the alleged re-emergence of a Syrian track in the investigation at a time like this — when the regime is battling internal protests and challenges to its authority — seems a little too convenient for me.

Finally, thanks to everyone who participated in the discussion with Camille Otrakji last week. As of this moment, the comment count is up to 685 and seems destined to top 700 by the end of lunch. You’ll have a chance to re-engage with Camille some time next week when I interview him over at Bloggingheads. Stay tuned!
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206 thoughts on “Syria: Conveniently Vulnerable Once Again?

  1. QN,

    At this point in time, all I am hoping for is to read the indictments before my first great-great-grand child’s Bar Mitzvah.

    Posted by AIG | May 12, 2011, 11:36 am
  2. I must say that of everything related to STL, I really respect Judge Fransen. He just issued a decision, ordering the Prosecutor to release many documents to Jamil Sayyed.

    Check the press release:
    And here’s a link to the decision (in French, translation to follow):

    Click to access 20110512_F0084_CH-PTJ-2011-08_PTJ_Decision_Remise_des_Pieces_filed_FR.pdf

    Bellemare has to organise the handover of documents by 27 May…

    When will Bellemare appeal?

    Posted by Umm iDriss | May 12, 2011, 11:45 am
  3. QN,

    I love the new Logo of STL, courtesy of Qifa, Bravo. It’s just perfect,timely and so very witty! Thanks, I will treasure that one until the next one comes along…:)

    Posted by HK | May 12, 2011, 12:29 pm
  4. It is out of character for the ultra-secretive Bellemare to release a statement on new evidence.

    Is it a tactic to increase suspicion and perhaps, paranoia, in the minds of the upper echelons of the Assad clan?

    Or was it a preemptive strike by Bellemare to appeal Fransen’s order?

    Time will tell.

    Posted by R2D2 | May 12, 2011, 12:34 pm
  5. AIG,

    As a self-professed atheist, will you attend that religious ritual?

    Posted by R2D2 | May 12, 2011, 12:46 pm
  6. R2D2,

    If I only should be so lucky. Of course I would attend. Why wouldn’t I? In fact, if I am asked to complete a minyan I always oblige as I am part of the Jewish community. I just do not believe that god exists, that does not mean I do not participate in the rituals of my tribe.

    Posted by AIG | May 12, 2011, 1:01 pm
  7. I suspect that the “sources” (of which I suspect there is only one – Lebanese papers have a really bad habit of always using the plural to shore up an unattributed claim) shopped it around to the big boys before settling on Naharnet – no one else cares at this point.

    Posted by Gary C. Gambill | May 12, 2011, 1:07 pm
  8. Here comes again the rabid Gary Gambill of the infamous White House Murder INC, and USCFL/CIA/MOSSAD ilk, spewing his usual Disinformation horseshit on behalf of his handlers.

    Posted by HK | May 12, 2011, 1:14 pm
  9. Why do people assume that it was either Syria or Hizballah who assassinated Hariri without acknowledging that it could have been both? They aren’t mutually exclusive, quite to contrary in fact. If (haha, yeah “if”) Assad ordered the hit on Hariri (mafia-lingo is definitely apt for this regime) then involving a local Lebanese actor (if you can call Hizballah that) makes perfect sense. In addition to creating another layer of deniability it would allow them to stir the pot of sectarian strife in case things got too heated …

    … the Assads always ran a well oiled racket …

    Posted by Theodore Arz | May 12, 2011, 1:16 pm
  10. “The well oiled racket …” leads all the way to the very heart of Washington DC, Herzliyah and the odious White House Murder INC, in the Levant, in a joint venture with Asef Shawkat and the Assad Mafia since January 24th 2002.

    Posted by HK | May 12, 2011, 1:28 pm
  11. AIG,

    You are as dumb and clueless as the “atheist” that “baptizes” his kids and holds a celebration for his child’s first communion because it is “tribal”.

    Just stick to calling yourself Jewish, dude.

    You’re an insult to Atheists.

    Posted by R2D2 | May 12, 2011, 1:38 pm
  12. R2D2,

    You are an ignorant extremist that does not understand that being an atheist does not mean being against religious customs.

    Posted by AIG | May 12, 2011, 2:06 pm
  13. AIG,

    What dictionary has your fellow atheist Jewish salesman suckered you into buying?

    You should look up what being an atheist really means. You’re connected … aren’t you?

    Google it.

    Posted by R2D2 | May 12, 2011, 2:16 pm
  14. I don’t see anything news worthy about the ‘sources”…Same old garbage regurgitated.

    I will wait for the indictments to be announced and the evidence at the trial.

    Everything else is pure scata used by one party or another to manipulate minds.

    Posted by danny | May 12, 2011, 2:24 pm
  15. I am dumbfounded to find that an item in Naharnet is deemed important enough to warant a post of its own!!! Does anyone remember the Diar Newspaper claims about breaking newsworthy stories and how such claims proved to be as long lived as moths circling an incandescent light bulb? Is this materially different? How can such an item be considered to be part of a conspiracy against Syria? Maybe it was the Zionists that encouraged Bashar to assassinate Rafic Hariri so that they can set in motion this conspiracy to get to indict him? That is nothing short of a very wild imagination that is guided by visions of black helicopters.

    AIG is not an “insult to Atheists” because he is willing to attend a ceremony to which he is invited? I have no use for any of the religious stories and definitely for no organized religios establishment but yet I will attend later this summer the baptismal ceremony of my granddaughter. Her parents have chosen to baptise her and I will have no problem going to a church and even making the sign of the cross if that is what the tradition at such ceremonies expects? Does that make me a hypocrite? Far from it. I am just participating in a social tribal ritual that I do not find very dangerous and that does not require me to profess a belief in a particular form of creation.

    Posted by Ghassan Karam | May 12, 2011, 2:30 pm
  16. R2D2,

    In addition to being an idiot and a fake you are a typical Lebanese prick, a rabid racist and anti-Semite.
    You are embarrassing, so please shut up and spare us your idiotic comments.

    Please put a sock in it you are so boring so shut up about the Murder Inc.


    You had us worried by skipping an entire post, welcome back.


    Posted by V | May 12, 2011, 2:45 pm
  17. Mehlis solved the crime long ago. They just have to go back to his final report.

    New witnesses could be related to Farouq al-Shar3a. But that is not important.

    The logo accompanying the post is inaccurate and in fact ‘salacious’.

    This piece of news is hardly worth paying any attention to.

    Posted by iceman | May 12, 2011, 2:50 pm
  18. V,
    I did not post during the discussion of the last post on purpose. It so happened that I had posted , more or less simultaneously, two posts on the same subject and so i did not want to repeat myself:-) If you are interested in what I would have had to say then take a look at:



    Posted by ghassan karam | May 12, 2011, 3:20 pm
  19. Pakistan is supplying mercenaries to the crypto-Zionist Wahhabi crazies of Al-Sauds and the Gulf Emirs, to aid in their crackdown on Shi’as everywhere, among other things… However, there is a major contradiction for Pakistan, namely the fact that it is impossible not to see that the Al-Sauds and the Gulf Emirs are dancing to a USraeli tune. No one who pays attention to Arab politics can fail to understand that the Muslim Brotherhood is now busily looking, in response to the wishes of the creepy Wahhabi Al-Sauds, for a modus vivendi with Israel. The Shi’as public are not naive, and they don’t appreciate seeing ‘Islamic solidarity’ prostituted in this way, do they? The Odious White House Murder INC, is about to lose a partner in crime in the Levant, if the Assad Mafia are indicted together with the pimp Asef Shawkat.

    V, you must be high again in the Hindu Kush, together with your buddies from Xe.

    Posted by HK | May 12, 2011, 3:22 pm
  20. Thanks GK.

    HK- you guessed it… Here at Camp Squirrels we aim to please and our sole purpose is to churn out conspiracy after the other to keep you folks busy.
    Incidentally, wasn’t the STL one of our tools to bring down your valiant resistors? And now we are using it getting one of our own the esteemed Shawkat and Co.? Interesting…glad we are of service.

    Posted by V | May 12, 2011, 4:00 pm
  21. QN…..

    I think before posting new topics, you should really run it by Iceman first, so he can give it his discussion-worthy stamp of approval 😉

    Posted by Gabriel | May 12, 2011, 4:09 pm
  22. HK.

    By high in the Hindu Kush, did you mean altitude or on opiates?

    Posted by Gabriel | May 12, 2011, 4:12 pm
  23. Considering this is HK, I’m gonna guess “opiates”.

    Posted by Bad Vilbel | May 12, 2011, 4:15 pm
  24. @Gabriel #21


    @V #16

    Please be nice.

    Posted by Qifa Nabki | May 12, 2011, 4:30 pm
  25. We’re at 697 comments over on the other post…

    Don’t tell me you’ve run out of brilliant insights to push it over the 700 mark. 😉

    Posted by Qifa Nabki | May 12, 2011, 4:32 pm
  26. Qifa…Don’t bump me again dude… 😀

    Posted by danny | May 12, 2011, 4:46 pm
  27. HK is from the Cheech & Chung college…

    Posted by danny | May 12, 2011, 4:48 pm
  28. I dont write here often. My English is bad and I know less than most people here. I find the exchange between R2D2 and AIG interesting. You see, Baptism and Bar Mitzva have basically, originaly, noting do do with God or religion. Men practiced these rites long before they invented God and Religion. Perhaps even before they were modern men. You can say that modern, formal religions stole these rites. These rites are rites of passage. They mark important stations in the passage of all human beings from the womb to the grave. When we dig a grave 15.000 yeas old, before there was God, real property, agriculture, reading, we can see that a new born is interned differently than a young child. The new born was not accepted yet into the community, he was not a complete men. It is the same in many modern or premoden societies. Baptism and Circumscision mark that station, the acceptance, the entry, of the new being to the society of man. Bar-Mitzva mark the station when one passes from child to man. Almost all human cultures known to us from: America, Asia, Africa, Australia mark that station. It is a critical station and the rites performed there are very important. You can read about such rites in books or see them on TV. Jews, and others, should know that in reality a strange rite they see in the middle of Africa or Australia is basically a Bar-mitzva. When we dig an old, very old, grave we find that boys and men are, at times, not treated similarily. Unlike boys men have been through the right rite and passed that station
    By going to such rites, participating in them or just observing, even when they are covered with all kind of modern and premodern masks which one does not like, one affirms ones humanity. Thus he becomes a part of a very very old tradion, a tradition that realy unites us all as human beings, as we were when human beings just became humans. Before the invention of God, religion, property, reading, writings, cities, the use of metals and such. Intresting is it not.

    Posted by Rani Hazbani | May 12, 2011, 4:50 pm
  29. Rani,

    Its not that interesting. R2D2 jumps at every opportunity to bash AIG for supposedly being a Jew and atheist at the same time. I known about a Black Jewish homosexual Freemason atheist, figure that one out R2D2. Whatever makes you tick.

    for interview 2.0, is it possible to give us the opportunity to throw some questions to Mr. Camille.
    I think you’d have more than enough pressing questions.
    e.g. What is the definition of balanced?
    Why do you keep quoting pro-regime sources?
    If someone hasnt shaven in 3 days, does that make him a rabid salafi?
    What is your definition of REFORM?
    Seriously now, What is reform?
    can you spell reform?
    Why does the regime block out any media?
    How many portraits of Bashar do you have hanging up on your bedroom wall?

    Anyone else?

    Posted by Maverick | May 12, 2011, 5:51 pm
  30. So considering that the Asad regime has no history of assassinations, and neither does Hezbollah, how is would it be typical of the Asad regime to order this “hit” on Hariri? You want someone with a real history in international assassinations? Look south. They’ve been doing it as sport for the past 63 years.. and before really if you read more into their history.

    It’s obvious they’re just trying to pile on the pressure because Asad, and his father, refused to give up an inch to the west and Israel their who life. It’s why the overwhelming majority of us Syrians love them so much. Financing and arming terrorist groups inside the country, attempting to crash the SYP, trying to stir the Kurds in the east, the STL, the UN Human Rights Council (with Bahrain, Qatar, Jordan and KSA as members), the meaningless US and EU sanctions, the nuclear reactor (oh the drama!), and what next? Come on world, just pile it on us, but we will never kneel.

    Posted by Murad | May 12, 2011, 5:56 pm
  31. Yes Murad,

    The Assads have been innocent all along. All they ever tried to do was reform.But the white house murder inc. kept funding all these groups to meddle in internal affairs.

    Why off course it was the Israelis who killed Harriri and all the anti-Syrian figures of the Beirut spring. Israel also killed Mouawad, Gemayel, Kamal Joumblatt, and a whole host of Lebanese political figures. They are that good, I’m wondering why they haven’t taken over the country yet. Ahhh yes, Tis Bashar to save the day. He keeps us safe, this is why he is so loved in Lebanon.

    Posted by Maverick | May 12, 2011, 6:11 pm
  32. The Assad’s have no history of assassinations?


    Where do these people come out of the woodwork from???

    Kamal Jumblatt
    Bashir Gemayel
    Rene Mouawad
    Sheikh Hassan Khaled

    Not to mention countless civilians who disappeared into the black holes of Syrian mukhabarat facilities near Anjar, etc.

    Oh wait. I must have been mistaken…Those were all “reformed” into heaven.

    Posted by Bad Vilbel | May 12, 2011, 6:21 pm
  33. BV,
    check this article by Michael Young.Exactly reflected what I was saying in the last post, only infinitely more eloquent. 🙂

    “When the uprising in Syria began earlier this year, foreign governments urged Mr al Assad to introduce reforms. However, in the Syrian context, reform is shorthand for the collapse of the Assad-controlled order. If the leadership was to implement reform by opening up the political system and allowing free elections, permitting independent media, introducing the rule of law, ending the paramount role of the Baath Party and cutting the powers of the myriad security agencies, that would be tantamount to political suicide. Mr al Assad never had any intention of taking such measures, and will not do so at present, especially if he crushes the revolt.”


    Posted by Maverick | May 12, 2011, 6:30 pm
  34. Maverick #33
    That is precisely why I have maintained that a dictatorship cannot evolve into a democracy. That would be evolving into its negation. Its very simple really yet some persist in obfuscation. That will never work.

    Posted by Ghassan Karam | May 12, 2011, 6:45 pm
  35. I do not know what to make of this video. If it is true then it is shameful.

    Posted by Ghassan Karam | May 12, 2011, 7:00 pm
  36. They have all the markings of Hizballah gunmen, including the guy with the RPG rocket launcher, and the sneakers with military uniform, the accents and the taunting of the captives saying ” Are they your enemies, are they the zionists?” referring to the Baath regime of course.
    But how and where and why the captives came to be in this position is mysterious.

    Posted by Maverick | May 12, 2011, 7:38 pm
  37. Gus,

    Those are the reform police. They are trying to change behavior according to Murad and Alex…I am sure.

    Bashar is popular and there are only 300 people protesting.That’s why they need to bomb their own towns; torture their own people. JUST 300 PEOPLE ONLY!! Ask Alex if you don’t believe me. He has reliable sources of Cham press, SANA or Press TV.

    BV, forget about these man. I could explode on their utter stupidity; ignorance or both!

    Posted by danny | May 12, 2011, 7:41 pm
  38. On a serious note…. given the gravity and tremendous changes in the region. The ever-more complicated STL situation. The political bargaining that no doubt is happening behind closed doors….

    … where are the pro-Muqawama camp?

    Posted by Gabriel | May 12, 2011, 7:47 pm
  39. Gabriel,

    either they stopped coming here because they knew their propaganda didnt stick, or they are undergoing internal reforms and a reshuffling of perceptions.

    Posted by Maverick | May 12, 2011, 8:13 pm
  40. Rani. I thought your essay was interesting as it put tribal rituals into a wider context.

    Fact is that we of the atheist persuasion are members of the most hated tribe of all & can’t really afford to risk the complete social isolation that would result from blanket refusals to participate in all religiously tinged rituals.

    Plus, snubbing Santa=no Winter Solstice presents.

    Posted by lally | May 12, 2011, 8:18 pm
  41. I do not know what to make of this video. If it is true then it is shameful.


    I agree with your statement above. Boy these long-haired and totally passive “terrorists” don’t look like “whahhabi”/”salafi” gangs to me.

    Welcome back. We missed your POV.

    Maybe you or someone else knows what’s going on in Egypt. I sense the government (military) is moving toward a “street” consensus policy, yet it seems Egyptians are still demonstrating? And what about this friction with the Christians there? When are elections scheduled?

    The same questions go for Lebanon if you have the energy to chime in.

    With intolerance the common denominator in the ME (see R2D2’s posts above), this has to be another phenomenon that will improve as these Arab countries meet the 21st century.


    Posted by Akbar Palace | May 12, 2011, 8:59 pm
  42. As of latest posting, Joshua Landis predicts Assad’s days are numbered. But Syria will also break into 8 ministates according to predictions.

    He has all that figured out with a map to prove it.

    By next posting there will be full moon, however, and the mood may change accordingly. If need be, a new map can then be redrawn.

    Posted by iceman | May 12, 2011, 9:51 pm
  43. Whoever posted that video is the one who should be ashamed, for trying to discredit The Resistance. Of course, it only proves the willingness of the valiant heroes to fight “israeli” influence wherever it may appear in defense of Lebanon and its legitimate interests, which everyone recognizes.

    Posted by dontgetit | May 12, 2011, 10:13 pm
  44. To all those (including, sometimes, me) who doubted the lucidity of Prof. Landis over at Syriacomment, his latest post is very sobering and should snap most, if not all of us, to the reality of his true expertise and perceptivity:

    Posted by Honest Patriot | May 12, 2011, 10:13 pm
  45. Dictators often feel that “this time it is different” and that repression will allow them to rule and will result in stability. It never does, not in the long run. The greater the repression then the more violent and the deadlier is the explosion.

    Both Tunisia and Egypt have lucked out in having their respective dictators abdicate/runaway. Bashar Assad of Syria however is determined to bring a blood bath to the people that , until two months ago, he claimed to be dedicated to their welfare. I do not think that the map that accompanies the JL post in SC will materialize but the blood bath is looking more and more inevitable.

    Posted by Ghassan Karam | May 12, 2011, 11:20 pm
  46. V #16,

    I am a typical Lebanese prick ? From your mouth to the doors of heaven 🙂


    Welcome back. Good going on the BBC.

    I do find it hypocritical that atheists or agnostics still baptize (infect) their children because it is ritualistic (Insurance).

    I practice what I preach in my life.

    Posted by R2D2 | May 12, 2011, 11:53 pm
  47. He does after all have a cabinet of some sort consisting of powerful men and women who are feudal Zaims, business men, Managers etc….. if bad became worse, the second tier of executive “leaders” although publicly in support of the regime, would in all likelihood take matters in their own hands if they are faced with the impending gloomy scenario.
    Isn’t there such cases in Tunisia and Egypt. Are we being unrealistic in perceiving the only outcomes as black and white; Either regime stays or Syria burns. I found the map of a dissected Syria a little too extreme also. I think the Syrian people are more united than we think, and yes there are fault lines but I think civil war and revenge killings on a mass scale is a little speculative.
    Lets not forget there are a lot of independent Alawites who suffered under Bashar/Hafiz, and the Sunnis know that. They also know that there is too much at stake, seeing Iraq and Lebanon as prior examples to waste their energy on revenge killings and the further destruction of their country.
    All I am saying is lets not be hasty. We have been fed a lot of disinformation from pro-regimer’s who cloak their support with intellectual garb and so called “objectivity”. There is no question, that the Assad reign in Syria will inevitably come to an end. It is only a matter of time,that much is apparent, however what is ambiguous and murky is how much collateral damage the ousting of this regime will cause.
    I believe the opposition needs more time. There needs to be a link between western based anti-regime’rs , civil organizations, and elements of the ruling elite of the current cabinet. This synchronicity is achievable but it needs time to cultivate.

    Posted by Maverick | May 13, 2011, 12:05 am
  48. Maverick,

    Jewish Atheist, Christian Atheist or Muslim Atheist are oxymorons.

    Israeli Atheist, Lebanese Atheist … I can live with.

    Posted by R2D2 | May 13, 2011, 12:43 am
  49. Ghassan welcome back.

    Nice to see some sane voices show up again. The previous post was a nightmare.

    I am in complete agreement with you on the basic premise that dictatorship is inherently incapable of reform because it would be negating itself.

    Thank you for putting it so succintly and eloquently, as I struggled to formulate the same thought in such a succint manner in the previous post.

    I continue to ask those who “have faith” that the regime will reform if only given the chance what they are basing this belief on: Historical precedent (there is none)? Inside information none of us are privvy to? (Haha!) or some leap of faith based on absolutely nothing more than wishful thinking?

    I do not know, but I failed to obtain a coherent answer. I suspect it is because there is none.

    Posted by Bad Vilbel | May 13, 2011, 12:47 am
  50. R2D2 #46
    Thanks for the kind words regarding BBC.
    As for the baptismal issue allow me to pose a question: Would you refuse to attend a Hindu festivity that your good friend invites to? What do you strongly object to accepting an invitation to an activity that makes no demands on your beliefs? Do you think that a Moslem should not accept an invitation for an Easter dinner, a Christmas celebration or should shun all activities that have a Santa Clause in attendance? Furthermore when I reject something for myself, does that give me the right to impose my beliefs on the other members of my family?

    Posted by Ghassan Karam | May 13, 2011, 12:49 am
  51. GK,

    I’d rather share Darwin day with my children and invite people of different religious faiths to celebrate his birth.

    It’s time for us to move forwards to civilization 2.0.

    Posted by R2D2 | May 13, 2011, 1:08 am
  52. And pitiful that the Jews have gone from becoming Israelis to becoming Jews again.

    Posted by R2D2 | May 13, 2011, 1:20 am
  53. Joshua Landis wrote an insightful post for a change.

    Check it out.

    Posted by R2D2 | May 13, 2011, 1:47 am
  54. V,
    You seem to be well versed in All my posts, through and through. You must like the “boring” stuff! But Hey:
    I am not at all surprised, Heavenly Justice always works in deliberate but mysterious ways. Rest assured that ALL those who were/are involved in the Infamous White House Murder/Assassinations INC, since 2000; “de pres ou de loin” will meet similar fates indeed and in a timely manner. On that front, I have no doubts whatsoever.
    But since whatever I say is so boring, I urge to skip all my posts and concentrate on the schmuck Danny, who is a Geageaite Freshman. I am sure that you two can be soul-mates!

    Posted by HK | May 13, 2011, 6:34 am
  55. HK,

    Dude what’s up man? Did you step off your mass murderer Hobeika’s shrine with some potent Hash in your nostrils? Chill bro.


    I would suggest that you post about the possible scenarios in The Lebanese arena. What are HA’s options and its ramifications on Lebanon if Syria were to change its stance towards HA post Assad.
    …and What if Assad survives by triggering a war in Lebanon with Israel to divert attention?

    Posted by danny | May 13, 2011, 6:52 am
  56. A good read by Ziad majed…roundtable.


    Posted by danny | May 13, 2011, 7:24 am
  57. Danny,

    Birds of a feather, flock together.
    The only convicted Mass Murderer in Lebanon is your idol, criminal buffoon Samir Geagea, the Head of a CIA Proxy Militia of thugs since 1986. He did 11 years underground in the Klink, only to be resuscitated by CIA/MOSSAD and the infamous White House Murder INC, in 2005 for him to be pressed into their despicable service again. Elie Hobeika’s record is spanking clean and has never set foot in a court of Law, despite the salient lies spread about by lunatics since 1982…People who regurgitate those lies about Elie Hobeika are not “in the know” and know nothing about the facts. Lebanon will survive their shenanigans and will come out stronger rest assured, thanks to Hezbollah and the wisdom of Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah, no matter what happens to the Assad Mafia in Damascus.

    Posted by HK | May 13, 2011, 8:17 am
  58. HK…Right… 😀

    Posted by danny | May 13, 2011, 8:30 am
  59. 80 innocent civilians massacred in Pakistan in “revenge” for OBL, Al-CIAda’s Bogeyman within the confines of the atrocious False Flag Attacks of 9/11…

    Of course the Western-controlled media is claiming that this is a revenge attack for the alleged killing of bin Laden, but is it really? These kinds of bombings take place on a regular basis in Pakistan, especially in the “wild west” around Peshawar. If it was actually the TTP, then it can be tied to the primary foreign sponsors of the militant group, namely, the US/Britain/Indian secret services and rogue elements within the ISI, who sub-contract from the CIA. If this is a TTP attack, or even if it is a “Blackwater/Xe” bombing, expect a wave of similar attacks to sweep across Pakistan, in order to validate the claim that Pakistan needs saved from itself by the odious White House Murder INC, Circa 2011 and the Nobel Laureate Obushma.

    Posted by HK | May 13, 2011, 8:42 am
  60. danny

    I will think on it.

    Posted by Qifa Nabki | May 13, 2011, 9:43 am
  61. This is an interesting take on Clashes and Revolutions. A twist I hadn’t read before…


    “I believe there is co-operation between Saudi Arabia and the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces to make this revolution very bloody, to prevent the prosecution of Mubarak, and send a message to the rest of the Arab people that if they want to start a revolution and remove a leader, it will end like Egypt,” he says.

    This is impossible to prove but many Egyptians believe it.

    Posted by Gabriel | May 13, 2011, 11:23 am
  62. HK,

    I enjoyed your Post 59.

    It’s a great example how you blame the US for everything, inluding the murder of 80 innocent muslims, when all we have is just another case of muslims killing muslims.

    Posted by Akbar Palace | May 13, 2011, 11:59 am
  63. Gabriel 61….

    E tu Brute? Conspiracy theories again?

    Posted by Bad Vilbel | May 13, 2011, 12:49 pm
  64. Suleiman stated: “Lebanon has no choice but to launch deep dialogue over how to implement the Taif agreement.”

    Posted by R2D2 | May 13, 2011, 1:06 pm
  65. What a brilliant mind, that Suleiman…(*rolling eyes*)

    Posted by Bad Vilbel | May 13, 2011, 1:10 pm
  66. BV

    Not everything needs be taken as a conspiracy theory, or otherwise.

    It’s interesting to read what others have to say, and how they perceive things, whether or not you agree with them.

    So the “Saudi” hidden hands have been used to explain trying to dislodge Assad, and the contradictory position of fomenting trouble to try to justify keeping despots in place.
    How accurate is this BBC article when it says a lot of Egyptians “believe” it.

    And either way, even after the “democratic” movement in Egypt, the army’s still there and it was always the power broker. They only got rid of the face of the regime. Whether one blames recent communal clashes on remnants of the Mubarak regime, or Saudi hidden hands, or hold as I do that the issues are more structural… this doesn’t change the fact that different people have different readings of what’s going on.

    Posted by Gabriel | May 13, 2011, 1:29 pm
  67. Gabriel,

    Can you explain how SANA boasted that KSA’s king had called to offer his support to Bashar and his regime while at the same time you are suggesting the “hidden Saudi hands” have been fomenting strife in Syria. Do you have any evidence or links? Even to Syrian official sites?

    Posted by danny | May 13, 2011, 1:45 pm
  68. The Russians today warned NATO and the US against engaging Syria as it did Libya.

    How would Syrians feel about a NATO incursion ?

    Posted by R2D2 | May 13, 2011, 1:46 pm
  69. Danny…

    I’m not suggesting anything. I thought that Alex in the previous thread had suggested the Saudis were rocking the boat, so that they can come to Syria and marry blonde Syrian women, or something along those lines.

    Anyways, I don’t have time to follow hundreds of blogs, TV news, etc. I’m a summary kind of guy. So I don’t know what comes on SANA TV. That’s why I like QN’s forum, a nice place to have lots of different sources compiled into 1 central location.

    Posted by Gabriel | May 13, 2011, 1:56 pm
  70. STL’s Daniel Bellemare seeking French intelligence information on Hariri’s Hit in May 2011!?
    The question is: What did the French know, and when did they know it? Why did they not share that info with STL since 2005?
    The bigger question remains, What did the French know since the famous meeting of Chirac/GWB in Normandy in June 2004?
    I know of dozens of official visits to France by the thuggish Asef Shawkat since 2005, and dozens of visits to Asef Shawkat in Damascus by French intelligence reps. !!!
    Any information provided by Syrian whistle-blowers are welcome…

    Posted by HK | May 13, 2011, 2:06 pm
  71. Egyptian troops fired in the air to disperse a protest outside the Israeli embassy demanding the expulsion of the ambassador and the severance of ties with the Jewish state.

    Surprise, surprise !!

    Posted by R2D2 | May 13, 2011, 2:13 pm
  72. Egyptian TV: Suzanne Mubarak has been rushed to intensive care after suffering a suspected heart attack.

    The tune to Dr. Zhivago comes to mind 🙂

    Posted by R2D2 | May 13, 2011, 2:27 pm
  73. Danny, BV,

    This BBC article is a piece of bullshit.

    The recent violence in Imbaba was triggered by similar past incidents that were happening during Mubarak’s time. A woman by the name of 3Abeer Fakhry presumably converted to Islam and was then detained by the Coptic church. The woman is now in custody under arrest for being ‘married’ to two differnt persons at the same time. She confessed her conversion and her double marriages.

    The Qana protests numbered over a million in number demanding the removal of an appointed governor who happened to be Coptic, but the demonstrators made it clear they do not want him because he was one of Mubarak’s men.

    Western media reporters are buying into too many rumors whithout substantiating.

    Posted by iceman | May 13, 2011, 2:49 pm
  74. Ok Gabby… Cop out artist!!! Good to know your source is Alex…Lay off the BS next time if you cannot back it up EH??

    Posted by danny | May 13, 2011, 3:13 pm
  75. Danny…

    I’m not really sure what you’re going on about. By all means attack if you want to. But what exactly are you attacking?

    > Are you attacking the statement that there are those who believe that Saudi hands are behind the events in Syria?

    If so. Google is your friend. Alex said he believes so here on QN. But there are others who believe it. I didn’t say I believed it.

    > Are you attacking the statement that there are those in Egypt who said they think Saudi is behind the developments in Syria?

    Again, I posted a BBC article that said so. And again, I did not say I agree with this statement. It’s absurd to agree since those issues were there long before the overthrow of Mubarak. But it’s funny to see the issue pinned on this now.

    What I found amusing is that between the two narratives, they are contradictory. One says that Saudi foments trouble to get rid of a dictator. The other says it foments trouble to make sure the Arabs don’t think of getting rid of their dictators.

    So what are you attacking?

    Posted by Gabriel | May 13, 2011, 3:31 pm
  76. Gabriel,

    I am not attacking. I just asked if you can back up your “hidden hands” assertion and give me some Syrian Official sources link. You throw around statements with no foundation. I assume you were trying to stir the HK POT.

    Alright you are right! It’s just another opinion. I value yours. Yalla let’s move on. My apologies for the perceived attack. Cool eh?

    Posted by danny | May 13, 2011, 4:24 pm
  77. An great quote by QN’s superman twin Ziad Baroud.

    Posted by danny | May 13, 2011, 4:28 pm
  78. Danny, no worries. I have very thick skin either way, it takes quite a bit to faze me 🙂

    Also, you should know, that the only pot I like to stir around here is the Iceman pot. But even when I don’t intend to, it appears, from his comment above, that I manage to stir it anyways. Go figure. I think that secretly, he likes me too :P. He simply cannot stay away.

    What a fascinating character. Simply fascinating.

    Posted by Gabriel | May 13, 2011, 4:46 pm
  79. Gabriel…If you go back a few months and reread the comments you’d find out that you and iceman (aka Anonymous) used to be soul mates lol. 😀

    Posted by danny | May 13, 2011, 5:13 pm
  80. Gabriel,

    I was just teasing you about conspiracy theories.

    I am well aware that the Egyptian army is still the main power broker in Egypt. We’ve discussed that matter before and I am taking it for granted. It’s specifically the bit about the Saudis teaming up with the Egyptian military to cause strife that had me chuckling. Not so much that it’s not possible (it could certainly be so), but in the way conspiracy theorists have this way of phrasing such claims that seem to generalize and oversimplify matters.

    It’s hard for me to point out the exact turn of phrase or grammatical structures, but there always seems to be a certain way these things are phrased that involved a lot of “they”.

    Reminds me of the typical “They’re gonna get you” paranoia…Where no one quite knows who “they” is….Shadowy people that seem to exist on a different plane and manipulate everyone and everything in this world of ours…(Well, except for Hassan Nassrallah, who’s immune to their mojo!)

    Reminds me of that Qnion piece from a few years back:


    Posted by Bad Vilbel | May 13, 2011, 5:19 pm
  81. I am sure that by now most of you have read these “gems”, uttered by President Suleiman:

    “ان لبنان يطبق ديموقراطية فريدة ونموذجية في العالم هي الديموقراطية التوافقية والتي تحفظ من خلال الدستور حقوق الجميع في المشاركة في ادارة الشأن السياسي.”

    A rough translation for those who do not read Arabic: Lebanon implements a unique type of democracy in the world ; an associative democracy that protects through the constitution the rights of everyone to participate in directing the political sphere.

    Doesn’t he have any shame? Isn’t it the height of irony to have an unconstitutional president sing the glories of constitutional government? Lest we forget this is also the same president who keeps on expressing his trust and lending his moral support to the most brutal authoritarian regime in the Arab world, even more brutal than that of Saudi Arabia.

    Posted by Ghassan Karam | May 13, 2011, 8:23 pm
  82. Lol Ghassan,

    It makes you wonder…Are Leb Pols just downright ignorant or are they the sleazy salesmen types who say shit and expect the population to buy it.
    IMO it is the latter, well not in Suleimans case, but most other Zaims and pols who have ruled Lebanon for decades.I think it is inherently Lebanese.
    It is comforting to know, the Lebanese are waking to this reality. Arab societies in general are waking to this reality….and they’ve had enough.

    One other thing, this whole cabinet formation debacle really just made it clear where the real intentions of our Pols lie. M8 were going through internal bickering of Portfolio allocations, Suleiman was holding steadfast to a Maronite position, M14 were hoping the formation to keep stalling so they can say I told you so, meanwhile the citizens are bombarded with rising costs, the usual utility failures, a bleak future and the rest of it.
    There is a great separation between the rulers and the people, and when that happens infrastructural power of a state gives way to Despotic power…..in Lebanon it is just a shared despotism, but despotism none the less.

    Posted by Maverick | May 13, 2011, 9:42 pm
  83. Maverick,
    One more thing that I might expand upon later is the conveniently short memory of HA and its allies.
    Who was it that insisted that the President is to be given a “share” in the cabinet and so suggested if you still recall all of these combinations such as 5, 14, 11; 5, 15, 10 … Gen Aoun makes the very valid point that I , for one, have been making for a couple of years constitutionally the president does NOT have a share neither does the presidency enjoy any important executive powers. It is essentially a ceremonial job, as it should be, in a parliamentary system. But if a parliamentary system is to function then it needs clear rules and regulations that would not permit the Speaker to shut down the Chamber of Deputies . No Speaker should be given the power to make a mockery of that which he/she is expected to promote and uphold.

    What Lebanon needs very badly is a President who recognizes the limits of the office, a Premiership that is willing to govern through the formation of a one colour cabinet and a speaker whose only concern is the efficient functioning of the Chamber on a continuous basis.

    Posted by Ghassan Karam | May 13, 2011, 10:06 pm
  84. During weekends it is OK to post after 6:00 PM.

    Today’s demonstrations in Syria were even larger in turnout as well as more widely spread despite the relentless crackdown by the thugs of the Maher brigade. That should keep the dictatorship regime scartching its head, and if all these demonstrators are INTRUDERS then there is something obviously wrong with the pervasive security apparatus. In this case, it is a great thing to be an intruder.


    Apparantly, the thugs brigade does not have sufficient mobility to cover all towns and cities, and it has to deal with one town at a time. The regime is also keeping the bulk of its security resources for Damascus and Aleppo knowing full well any large scale demonstrations in those cities means the end of the Assad dictatorship.

    On the other hand, Lebanon is a great country indeed. It has proven to the rest of the world that you do not need a government to run a country. And in this case it is pointless to revolt as there is nothing to revolt against. Bashar may be envious of the Lebanese system, and, I would even say, he may be contemplating som scheme whereby he and his regime can disappear from view for sometime until the demonstrators get frustrated after they realize there is no one to demonstrate against.

    Posted by iceman | May 13, 2011, 10:22 pm
  85. What Lebanon needs very badly is to trash the power sharing formula ,that not only, paralyzes the country at every turn, but also cultivates sectarianism. Until the Lebanese system becomes de-confessional we are going round in cycles, one violent cycle after another.

    I think the Lebanese are unknowingly practising the political theory of Anarchy. To some extent anyway.

    Posted by Maverick | May 13, 2011, 10:41 pm
  86. Power sharing formula in Lebanon cannot be trashed.

    Posted by iceman | May 13, 2011, 10:51 pm
  87. @86,

    Enlighten me as to why.

    Posted by Maverick | May 13, 2011, 11:06 pm
  88. Now it is clear, Khaddam killed Hariri, but President Assad told him to, He is confessing his sins.

    Posted by Norman | May 13, 2011, 11:30 pm
  89. #87
    There is a very simple reason. It is the only consensus the Lebanese have.

    OK, Khaddam surrendered. When will Assad surrender?

    Posted by iceman | May 13, 2011, 11:57 pm
  90. The Egyptians sent a very nice poem, reminiscent of Ahmed Chawqi’s almost a century ago,

    And this video from todays demonstratios is the most telling. It clearly shows the defiance of the demonstrators in the face of a large contingent of security thugs waiting for them at the end of the alley.

    Posted by iceman | May 14, 2011, 12:03 am
  91. Syrian reform is dead on arrival. The Syrian revolution is just starting.
    It’s time to reinforce success and starve failure. The Baa’th Dictatorship is not reformable. No one has a good handle on the numbers of civilians massacred in Hama in 1982, it ranges from 10.000 to 40.000, and no one has a good handle today in 2011. The hypocrisy in all of this saga, is that the mastermind and the executor of the Hama massacre is none other than Rifa’t Assad, brother of late Hafez Assad and uncle of Bashar, has been living in the West since 1984, between Marbella Spain, London UK, Saudi Arabia etc. together with his sons, flourishing and doing business in Media, construction, trade, etc. No one in the West or elsewhere ever thought about indicting this man in any way shape or form, and he is now one of the voices of the “opposition” in Syria…, courted by the West and the Wahhabis of Saudi Arabia. It is astounding that we hear so much garbage and lies about Sabra&Shatila over the years, decades since 82, which happened in the fog of war and the Israeli invasion of Lebanon with 150.000 soldiers, and the total occupation of Beirut by IDF, and we heard nothing about Hama for 4 decades until today, and still nothing about the main known culprit living openly in the West ever since. Where is Judge Balthazar Garcon and his indictments against Pinochet and others? STL’s shenanigans notwithstanding…Where is the ICC? Where were all the Human Rights organizations?
    Simply baffling and Pathetic.
    A good refuge for Bashar Assad’s Mafia in Damascus and Rifa’at’s thugs in Marbella, London and KSA is a hole 6’x6’x3′ filled over with dirt.
    The same fate applies to the Infamous White House Murder INC, (R).

    Posted by HK | May 14, 2011, 3:01 am
  92. Iceman

    On the other hand, Lebanon is a great country indeed. It has proven to the rest of the world that you do not need a government to run a country. And in this case it is pointless to revolt as there is nothing to revolt against.

    LOL. Sweeeet anarchist dream, finally on this wretched earth of ours.

    Posted by Off the Wall | May 14, 2011, 7:37 am
  93. Abdel-Halim Khaddam appeared on Israeli TV’s Channel 2 from Brussels claiming that he is receiving US and European material support in order to topple the Assad Mafia in Damascus.
    He added that NATO troops are planning an incursion into Syria from turkey in few weeks and that the Turkish army has received orders to prepare to join Nato troops in that endeavor. Khaddam added that success of this effort will result in an immediate Peace with Israel based on the Arab initiative of 2002…

    Posted by HK | May 14, 2011, 8:59 am
  94. Khaddam blood is Halal

    Posted by Norman | May 14, 2011, 10:18 am
  95. The events , this week end, have shown clearly that President Bashar Assad, is not in control. This was the second time that his spokesperson Bethina Shaaban declared emphatically that the President has issued orders Not to shoot at demonstrators.
    Well, Rami Makhlouf begs to differ and the score of deaths , besieged cities and tank bombardments have drowned Ms. Shaabans message.
    There is only one honourable thing left for Bashar Assad to do: pack up and leave.

    Posted by Ghassan Karam | May 14, 2011, 11:07 am
  96. lol @ 95 Norman the Barbarian !

    Posted by V | May 14, 2011, 11:23 am
  97. Those in control of the crackdown are Ali Mamlouk, Kudsieh, Asef Shawkat and Maher Assad. Bashar is a facade and Bushra is behind the throne with the Makhloufs holding the purse strings. A good refuge for Bashar Assad’s Mafia in Damascus and Rifa’at’s thugs in Marbella, London and KSA is a hole 6′x6′x3′ filled over with radioactive dirt.
    The same fate awaits the Infamous White House Murder INC, in the Levant and in Washington DC. (R)

    Posted by HK | May 14, 2011, 11:24 am
  98. Trippin’ down memory lane reveals that some foreign interferers are better than others:

    “The US continues its flurry of exchanges on wider Middle East issues with, as Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice calls them, the “mainstream” Arab states. To underpin these exchanges a secret “non-lethal finding” – signed by Bush and made available to the Congressional intelligence committees – is now in place. A “finding” is the requirement under US law for a policy statement setting out the need for “covert action” by the intelligence agencies, especially the CIA. In this case, the finding authorizes clandestine US financial support for the Sinoira government in Lebanon. It also authorizes the CIA to engage in anti-Hezbollah activity there. This activity is based on a strategic calculation that the US needs to counterbalance the gains made by “the Shi’a bloc” as a result of the power shifts in Iraq by bolstering “the Sunni bloc” represented by the US-friendly Arab states. Prince Bandar bin-Sultan, the former Saudi Ambassador to the US, and Israeli officials have actively advocated this approach. They argue that Lebanon is the test-bed for this strategy. In return for Saudi, Jordanian and Egyptian assistance on Lebanon, the US – with the Israelis fully in the picture – has undertaken to re-engage in the peace process. It has also provided assurances that it will not leave Iraq precipitously. US officials point to the Israeli release of some tax moneys owed to the Palestinian Authority as the first fruits of this approach.”


    Posted by lally | May 14, 2011, 11:30 am
  99. Next it’ll be the new guy has another plan…

    then it’ll be Hamas doesn’t want to play ball…
    then it’ll be Coin and counterrevolutionary tactics by the thugs in Dc and Herzliah
    then it’ll be another false flag attack by the infamous White House Murder INC,

    then it’ll be Livni will join a new coalition Government in Israhell

    then it’ll be a new agression by IDF war criminals on Lebanon
    then it’ll be US presidential elections…
    then the new administration won’t want to play ball…

    There’s always some horseshit reason to grab land and oppress a populace, be
    it their religion, their race, or some sliver of land someone owned a
    thousand years ago after genociding the populace.
    withdraw Israhell forces from ALL occupied Arab lands.
    Recognize Palestine as a state. That way they have equal representation in
    the United Nations and can self-determine. Anything else and you’re just
    Hitler’s Ministry of Justice.

    Posted by HK | May 14, 2011, 12:14 pm
  100. HK @94
    Was that a personal interview with the Khaddam or a phone-in intervention on a TV program? can anyone confirm?.

    Posted by Off the Wall | May 14, 2011, 1:01 pm
  101. The reason I am asking is that few days ago he publicly criticized the west for inaction on Syria, and I find such a swift change from a critic to admitting receiving support and planning for intervention ala Chalabi style. This is a bit strange and timely for the Syrian regime whose security solution seems to be failing. I am afraid of becoming a conspiracy theorist.

    Posted by Off the Wall | May 14, 2011, 1:06 pm
  102. D. Azmi Bishara speaks about Arab revolutions in a series of 4 videos. In the 2nd video, he speaks about the Syrian Revolution at length and raises issue that many may have overlooked,

    You’ll find the other videos on the Youtube page.

    Posted by iceman | May 14, 2011, 1:08 pm
  103. Khaddam was sitting with an Israeli reporter in a major Brussels Hotel with a Syrian flag behind him. There was also a long report from the interviewer giving all the facts about Khaddam’s reasons… and that he was fully cognizant of Israeli TV and the reporter said that this was his second interview with Khaddam since he left Syria 6 years age.

    Posted by HK | May 14, 2011, 1:13 pm
  104. Special screening for serial murderers eh?

    Posted by danny | May 14, 2011, 2:39 pm
  105. Ynet is reporting that tomorrow, the Palestinian ‘Nakba’, tens of thousands of Palestinians and supporters plan to demonstrate at the Lebanese-Israeli border.

    I suppose it’s to be a peaceful demonstration but with so many people things could get out of hand.

    I’d be interested to know what people on this forum think about this.
    Since I don’t remember ever hearing of such mass demonstrations on the border from Lebanon (at least not in recent years), the connection with the ongoing Arab revolts and events in Syria seem obvious…what do you think? Any thoughts as to how this might turn out, and what the effect will be (if any) on Syrian, Lebanese affairs?


    Posted by G | May 14, 2011, 3:05 pm
  106. G,

    Are you reporting for the Alaskan News Agency ?

    Where did you come across this piece of news, on a Friday morning …. in your twilight zone.

    Posted by R2D2 | May 14, 2011, 3:37 pm
  107. PiD.

    Ynet news is Israeli, not Alaskan.
    Here’s the link to the story:


    Posted by lally | May 14, 2011, 3:45 pm
  108. Ice,

    “You’re either with us, or against us!”

    Don’t you know that this famously patented slogan by G.W. Bush to justify waging “some folk’s wars” has been franchised after he left office?

    Yep … the first branches opened up in Dahiyeh soon after Obama was elected. Now in Damascus and opening in Teheran soon.

    All courtesy of the marketing team in charge of W … that know what the average redneck wants.

    Posted by R2D2 | May 14, 2011, 3:49 pm
  109. Thanks Lally,
    that’s where I first saw it, but it is being reported by a multitude of sources, especially about Lebanon:
    Here is a report from the “Daily Star” on the planned march to the border:


    Posted by G | May 14, 2011, 3:54 pm
  110. G,

    The Palestinians will be bussed or will march to the border to demonstrate for a few hours and then they will be bussed back to their camps. How is that going to change anything except help the economy of south Lebanon a little? On Monday morning the Palestinians will be back in their camps with the same problems and status they have today.

    Posted by AIG | May 14, 2011, 4:06 pm
  111. All thanks to whom, AIG?

    The Lebanese people ?

    Posted by R2D2 | May 14, 2011, 4:17 pm
  112. That only goes to show how ‘great’ GWB is, R2D2.

    Every one seems to miss him, even his presumed enemies.

    Posted by iceman | May 14, 2011, 5:19 pm
  113. More on IsraHell is you have the stomach for it:

    (caution, young madrassa-taught muslims should not watch)

    Posted by Akbar Palace | May 14, 2011, 5:23 pm
  114. Well you esteemed ladies and gentlemen; I know you all miss GWB…Especially HK and may he rest in peace Bin Laden.

    Posted by danny | May 14, 2011, 6:47 pm
  115. LOL AP,

    I cant believe you would even post that cheap propaganda.Not to take away from the pioneering and ambitious spirit of the jews.

    Anyhow, all Israeli efforts are rendered null unless you can produce better Hummous than your northern neighbors. In the end that’s all the West cares about.

    Posted by maverick | May 14, 2011, 7:02 pm
  116. Ghassan says

    A rough translation for those who do not read Arabic: Lebanon implements a unique type of democracy in the world ; an associative democracy that protects through the constitution the rights of everyone to participate in directing the political sphere.

    Ghassan, what’s actually more ironic in this statement than what you pointed out is not so much the unconstitutionality of the president, but this bit “rights of everyone to participate in directing the political sphere”…

    When was the last time a regular Lebanese citizen participated in directing the political sphere??? 1943?

    Posted by Bad Vilbel | May 14, 2011, 8:19 pm
  117. Maverick,

    You’d be surprised how much “cheap propaganda” can make the heads of anti-Zionists pop.

    Posted by Akbar Palace | May 14, 2011, 10:29 pm
  118. Hollywoodyan Osama revelations have reached the well-functioning sewer channels between the Obama WH abyss and the tabloid industry’s very receptive septic tank of info now. So we learn that Osama the Undead had a porn collection. It puts him in line with at least 80% of the rest of the male population on the planet, I think. How dare he be so ordinary when we want a mysterious bad guy? Or is this the double standard that says guys with porn under their mattress are baaad? We have reached levels of appealing to the dumbest of humanoids being targeted with messages from the infamous White House Murder INC, that not even Bush/Cheney mustered. YES, I do believe the WH and FDDC are fabricating/leaking this stuff….
    The fingerprints of those behind the phony Bin Laden “kill” story are apparent. Bin Laden computer “porn” story is right out of the annals of the German Nazi publisher Julius Streicher, from whom the Allies captured a huge cache of pornography during the war. Equating Bin Laden to Hitler has been a ploy of the Neocons and Zionists from day one and their COG 9/11 false flag attack in Logan, NY, DC & Pen.

    From Bin Laden porn stash:

    Debbie does Dubai
    Last Tango in Lahore
    Behind the Green Burka
    Hot Ariana Afghan Stewardesses


    The Globe on the cover says Osama also had track marks from heroin abuse. It is screaming from the checkstands of every supermarket this week. Ask the WH where that came from, I am sure somebody there planted it in the tabloids. We likely would learn that he is a hedonistic wife-swapper but he had 3 wives in his inventory, no extrinsic swapping needed.

    The most embarrassing thing – people read this and believe this and salivate at this. The WH spin machine knows what to churn out and that the cheapest trashiest lore will get him another 2% of poll ratings. What kind of world do we live in? In my darkest hour, I wonder if humanity is so ignorant and depraved that we all deserve to go extinct in earth changes if this world we created in all its ignorance, cruelty and greed is the best we could come up with in umpteen thousands of years of civilization. It has gotten really disgustingly ignorant now. Oh, and by the way, 9/11 was an inside Job wall to wall with Patsies Galore.
    So that Osama doesn’t lose his ominous militant image, please refer to Osama’s activities in the compound in the following manner:

    “Cleaning his rifle”
    “Polishing his bayonet”
    “Shining the helmet”
    “Shining the torpedo”
    “Holding the sausage hostage”
    “Yanking his doodle dandy”

    Copies of it must be leaked to MK Playboy and Hefner for wider distribution. Each issue will gain Obomba an additional 1% votes. If he admits that he is water-boarding OBL’s wives to gain crucial info, he will win in an epic landslide. (Yes, US sheeple are that stupid, cheap and trashy as a country – decades of ZOG brain-washing ensured that fact.)

    Hollywood shysters cash in on Obama’s ruse of “killing” Bin Laden. Disney trademarks SEAL TEAM SIX. Why don’t they trademark Obama? Disney can call him “Barky the Talking Circus Seal.”The toy can come complete with a stretch limo, crack pipe, Chicago hotel key, and an anatomically-correct “Ken” doll.

    Jellyfish Intelligence unites former Blackwater/Xe/Able Danger operatives in private CIA. Steady move to outsourcing of intelligence too and preparing more phony attacks with more bogeys.


    Perception = Reality

    The utterly corrupt US political system (the symbiotic political party/mass media complex) spends most of it’s time managing our perception of reality. People need to reach into their minds, unclick the setting that says “auto update”…and choose “custom install” when receiving new information.

    Posted by HK | May 15, 2011, 1:19 am
  119. Daily Digest about IsraHell and the crumbling ZOG rat-hole in DC.

    IMF chief Ziocon Dominique Strauss-Kahn arrested at JFK airport for sexually assaulting a maid at a mid-town Manhattan hotel. Strauss-Kahn and his fellow IMF degenerates have been assaulting nations and their peoples for years.

    Blackwater is back! Erik Prince hires mercenaries in Abu Dhabi. “Kingfish” Prince operates under Reflex Response (R2) and Thor Global Enterprises of Tortola…


    Posted by HK | May 15, 2011, 1:57 am
  120. Posted by HK | May 15, 2011, 3:02 am
  121. News agencies in Israel reporting that hundreds of Nakba demonstrators have crossed the Syrian-Israeli border fence in the Golan fighting has started along the border.

    Well, I was a bit off on the location, but I can sill say my suspicions were justified.


    Posted by G | May 15, 2011, 7:12 am
  122. It’s a desperate attempt to divert the pressure by the Syrian thugs of the Assad Mafia in Damascus, but it will be short lived…

    Posted by HK | May 15, 2011, 7:58 am
  123. This is the high moral character of the Islamist fanatic: He’s not only bloodthirsty, but a hypocrite too.


    Posted by Akbar Palace | May 15, 2011, 9:15 am
  124. Well well…Syria has predictably switched to plan B. Create tension along the border with Israel along Syrian & Lebanese frontiers to distract foreign and domestic attention.

    Let’s see what’s next? Kerry visiting his buddy reformer in Damascus to calm the nerves(as if WTF can Syria do in a confrontation with Israel)??

    Posted by danny | May 15, 2011, 11:18 am
  125. The IsraHell Ziocon Fascists of IDF are a Carbon copy of the Assad Mafia thugs in Damascus. 10 civilians murdered by IDF cowards on the Lebanese side of the border and 120 injured so far…
    Then, An Israeli army officer was on BBC today claiming from both sides of his filthy mouth that ALL the civilians fallen or injured today at Maroun El-Rass in south Lebanon were actually shot point blank by the Lebanese Army and that IDF never fired any shots on anyone… Talk about pathological liars through and through.

    Posted by HK | May 15, 2011, 12:07 pm
  126. My take on the clashes along Israel’s borders:

    It’s not so much about diverting attention to what’s happening in Syria, IMO. More of a “This is what will happen if the Assad regime falls” maneuver. Reminding the US and Israel that only Assad and co. can keep the peace on Israel’s borders…

    Old trick.

    Posted by Bad Vilbel | May 15, 2011, 12:50 pm
  127. BV,

    I don’t know about that. Everyone knows that no one is allowed to congregate anywhere in Syria nowadays unless it is orchestrated by the mukhabarat. Also, it is well known that these people were most likely bused by the regime in with the sole purpose of breaching the fence. Remember, it happened both on Lebanese and Syrian borders.

    On contraire mon ami; it basically exposes the filthy Assad regime where they’d sacrifice poor people’s lives to create havoc and divert attention to the “brutal zionist enemy” and Palestinians.

    Posted by danny | May 15, 2011, 1:09 pm
  128. … the question is…

    … will those shenanigans work?

    Posted by Gabriel | May 15, 2011, 1:10 pm
  129. Nothing will work for the Assad Mafia of thugs. What happened since mid-March is just a warm-up, the Revolution is about to take off. It will keep changing colors, areas and speed to keep them guessing where it goes next… I was encouraged today when watching average Syrian people speaking loudly their mind on Camera without any fear, live on TV, and calling all of Assad’s bluffs in a very courageous way, saying we are not salafists or any of the sort, we are normal people who are fed-up with your lies of 40 years and we want out now.

    Posted by HK | May 15, 2011, 1:20 pm
  130. Gabe,

    It all depends on Netanyahu and the current bunch in power in Israel.

    This incident will put air under Bibi’s wings next week in the US.

    Where’s dontgetit?

    Posted by R2D2 | May 15, 2011, 1:34 pm
  131. Both BV and danny are right.

    The regime is playing the only game it knows hoping to divert attention and gain momentum. It is the typical strategy of running forward from the problem to avoid the inevitable. This is the game of ‘fake resistance’.

    The Syrian and Iranian regimes have only one strategy to stiffle internal opposition: export the problem across the border.

    It will backfire this time as the real resistance is now being waged by the people themselves against the real tyrants.

    Who said resistance is not something admirable? You cannot but admire it when you witness it in the people’s defiance of their oppressive security thugs.

    I’ll just pre-empt the only HA contributor left here, and say to you to remember today to thank the resistance heroes who are fighting on your behalf in all the Syrian cities and towns.

    Posted by iceman | May 15, 2011, 1:42 pm
  132. Dontgetit is at the border coordinating with the resistance to keep us safe from the barbaric Zionists…


    Let’s look at it this way. So far the west; USA & EU have allowed the great reformer to do his trick all the while hoping that Assad will be able to brutally repress the protests and then offer a few cosmetic changes. All the time I have asserted that Bashar & Cousin Bibi need each other…

    Do you think a breach along the fence would get more support from the rest of the world? What more should the west do? Should they supply Assad with more weapons? Send in troops to crush the protests?

    The longer the protests linger the less the chances of this authoritarian regime will be able to survive and the supposedly “concerned west” will act.

    The only people who suffer are the ones that were herded to crush the gates…

    Posted by danny | May 15, 2011, 1:43 pm
  133. The IDF is claiming that at least half the victims have been shot at by the Lebanese army.

    This is going to be an interesting week locally.

    Posted by R2D2 | May 15, 2011, 1:51 pm
  134. From Naharnet …

    “The organizers of the rally told AFP that Hizbullah had financed the event.”

    Anyone have any link on the names and nationalities of the victims?

    Let’s hope they’re not going to turn the burials into a circus.

    Posted by R2D2 | May 15, 2011, 2:02 pm
  135. Now the slimy Lebanese politicians have something to agree on and will as usual outdo each other in their condemnation of the “Criminal Zionists” but the dead is dead and once again the poor and hopeless young Arabs serve as convenient fodder.

    Posted by V | May 15, 2011, 2:20 pm
  136. Looks like I’ll be forced to change my moniker back to PeterinDubai again.

    I guess it’ll be the second time I have GMA to thank for it.

    Posted by R2D2 | May 15, 2011, 2:29 pm
  137. The Trashy Wahhabis of Al-Arabia TV are claiming tonight that 2 IDF soldiers are missing/kidnapped in Majdal-Shams. Are we to expect an invasion of Syria tomorrow, a bombing campaign and the occupation of Damascus, together with Nato troops piling on from the North in few weeks with turkey in the forefront?
    Khaddam will be naming a Syrian Government in exile soon!

    Posted by HK | May 15, 2011, 2:40 pm
  138. HK,

    Your prose is like “Elvira” announcing a 120 minute B-Horror movie that we should watch till the end.


    Posted by R2D2 | May 15, 2011, 2:53 pm
  139. I don’t get Hizbulla’s perspective here, PR wise.
    Doesn’t this make them look bad for not assisting the civilians heroically storming the Israeli fence?
    Or perhaps since it was “only” Palestinians the resistance isn’t obliged to help out? Obviously nothing of this sort can happen in south Lebanon without HA’s consent, but to stand back and let the Evil Zionists shoot down the resistance isn’t very, well, resistant.

    Any thoughts?


    Posted by G | May 15, 2011, 2:58 pm
  140. Syria and the Resistance reserve the right to strike back at the proper time and in the proper place.

    Posted by V | May 15, 2011, 3:09 pm
  141. G,

    Hass-Nass and his buddies are still stuck in the 80’s. Think Bernie’s Vacation.

    Their favorite band ?? Guess who … “A flock of seagulls”

    Ever thought where the next President of the United States got his idea for a hair-do from?

    Conspiracies … talk to me.

    Posted by R2D2 | May 15, 2011, 3:10 pm
  142. V Says:

    May 15, 2011 at 3:09 pm

    Syria and the Resistance reserve the right to strike back at the proper time and in the proper place.

    Don’t steal for DONTGETIT bro. 😀

    G…What’s up G??? Why are you confused? That’s the plan.

    HK…Dude you are so comical. I thank QN and God (in that order) for your presence among us.

    Posted by danny | May 15, 2011, 3:38 pm
  143. R2D2, you are sewage, and need to be flushed.
    F*ck off and die painfully as soon as possible.
    The Glorious Legacy of Hezbollah, SHN and the Resistance will last forever, defending Lebanon with blood and treasure, no matter what happens to the Assad Mafia of thugs.
    Deal with it, or die with it, you and your ilk.

    Posted by HK | May 15, 2011, 3:59 pm
  144. Today, on this commemoration of the Naqba inflicted by the Zionists, the fighters of the Resistance have again demonstrated their importance and vital role. All of Lebanon cheers their victory.

    Posted by dontgetit | May 15, 2011, 4:14 pm
  145. Danny, V;

    I am not confus… just curious.
    I thought the display of control and deterrence vs. Israel was 1st priority for HA…but more and more it seems to me that the fact the demonstrators were supposedly from the Palestinian camps and therefore not Lebanese makes it “OK” for HA to stand back since no *real* Lebanese were hurt.

    Maybe they saw an additional PR perk in having the Lebanese army look like “collaborators” by violently pushing the demonstrators back from the fence?

    A glorious victory indeed…How about some sympathy for the poor shmuks who got shot on the border for nothing?
    If I can feel some than surly you can try.

    Posted by G | May 15, 2011, 4:29 pm
  146. Loss of life for nothing. What a waste.

    The facts are that the IDF made a wise decision not shoot the hundreds of Syrians that crossed the border and asked the Druze elders in Majdal Shams to tell them to return to Syria peacefully.

    In Lebanon the Lebanese Army was using live fire to prevent the protesters from reaching the fence. The IDF used snipers that aimed at the legs so most if not all the dead are because of Lebanese fire.

    Posted by AIG | May 15, 2011, 4:48 pm
  147. AIG

    Ballistics will tell the tale of who shot to kill. But have no fear, some Lebanese “patriots” will still insist that the LAF is responsible for the dead even if the ammo is clearly IDF issue unavailable to the LAF.

    Posted by lally | May 15, 2011, 5:02 pm
  148. AIG,

    I am sure there is a video of all the events. Since you are the one saying that your snipers shot the protesters in the legs…It would be prudent to release the “footage” to back your claim. Right?

    G. Relax. You have it all wrong. It is obvious you are new to Lebanese politics.

    Dontgetit… I get it. Stay vigilant with the divine warriors to defend our honor. 😀

    Posted by danny | May 15, 2011, 5:04 pm
  149. Lally,

    Both the IDF and the Lebanese Army use the same ammo, 5.56 mm NATO standard:

    Posted by AIG | May 15, 2011, 5:07 pm
  150. 148.

    Lally seriously PLeeeeeeese. Your HA always is proud to say they have confiscated IDF ammunition and military equipment. I suggest it was the divine heroes of the muqawama who killed the Lebanese with IDF bullets just like their masters in Syria’s mukhabarat.

    Posted by danny | May 15, 2011, 5:07 pm
  151. danny, YOUR HA homeboys would never give up their precious war trophies to the LAF…don’t be daft.

    AIG. Do yourself a favor already and stop with the stupid lies that no one with a lick of *common sense believes.

    *American teevee news viewers excepted.

    Posted by lally | May 15, 2011, 7:45 pm
  152. danny, YOUR HA homeboys would never give up their precious war trophies to the LAF…don’t be daft.

    … but maybe they’d just use them themselves?


    Posted by Gabriel | May 15, 2011, 8:01 pm
  153. Away from the very sad loss of life at the border…

    Does anyone know of an English translation of the closing statement of the recent Bkirki summit? Was the statement actually released? Based on the quotes in the papers, I guess the media got a copy.

    Posted by Jonathan | May 15, 2011, 9:38 pm
  154. I, for one, am pleased that the Lebanese and the Syrians took time out of their busy schedules to help free the Palestinians. Once they do that, they’ll have the experience and know-how to free themselves from their respective “leaders”.

    Posted by Akbar Palace | May 15, 2011, 10:56 pm
  155. Gaby,

    If lally knew how to read. 😀

    Posted by danny | May 15, 2011, 11:06 pm
  156. AIPAC On Stage LIVE, May 22-24, 2011, Babylon-On-The-D.C., Come and Get “Jiggy” with the Zionistas!
    See the Rabbi Schmuel Pole dancing with oily Taitz. Crazy Wahhabis & Salafists Bogeymen are always welcome!
    You’ll hear Disingenuous Treason. Outrageously Obscene double-Speak.
    Political Subterfuge and lickspittle Groveling that will literally stagger your imagination. DC, Headquarters of the infamous white House Murder INC.
    Zionist sodomy 4A Greater Israel. & DSK conquers the Big Apple, while Anne Sinclair bites the Dust in Paris!
    Rated two thumbs up and an around the World… Twice!
    Welcome to Ziocon Porn Weekend on the Potomac….after bin Laden porn, here comes Zio-porn….somehow bin Laden’s tryst with the goat is better than pole-dancing rabbis of IDF.

    Posted by HK | May 16, 2011, 12:55 am
  157. Major league dumb ass alert. Ziocon Sen. Charles Schumer wants a “no ride” list for passenger trains. How about you introducing this legislation from another legislature Chuckie Sleaze: the Knesset!



    Posted by HK | May 16, 2011, 1:22 am
  158. Don’t generalize, AP.

    Many fall in the trap of such generalizations.

    Let’s not be naive and think the demonstrations you refer to were “spontaneous.”

    Posted by Honest Patriot | May 16, 2011, 4:17 am
  159. Let’s not be naive and think the demonstrations you refer to were “spontaneous.”


    Spontaneous or not, people got killed. Another “bright idea” by those obsessed with anti-Zionism.

    Posted by Akbar Palace | May 16, 2011, 7:14 am
  160. Wow. Nice to see that we’ve again devolved into the now banal “who shot who” question.
    Last week it was the Syrian civilians shooting at the Syrian military courtesy of Alex.
    Today it’s whether the IDF, the LAF or HA shot at the protesters in South Lebanon…
    You guys really need to stop quibbling about the details (not that loss of life is ever insignificant) and look at the bigger picture once in a while.

    PS: AIG, I see the Israeli govt. did release the $100M in revenue to the PA today. (re: Our conversation last week)…

    Posted by Bad Vilbel | May 16, 2011, 12:24 pm
  161. BV,

    lally was insinuating as a crafty and brainwashed HA cadre would.


    Any video of the snipers’ “foot/leg shots” yet???

    What’s next? It seems like a lull before the storm…

    Posted by danny | May 16, 2011, 12:48 pm
  162. “US accuses Syria of inciting Sunday border violence”

    To read more: http://www.nowlebanon.com/NewsArticleDetails.aspx?ID=271633#ixzz1MXHq1ORp

    As I said in 125…USA calls the Syrian regime out. Everyone can see through their crass hypocrisy.

    Posted by danny | May 16, 2011, 1:06 pm
  163. BV,

    Regarding the money Israel released, I think it is irresponsible. They should have waited to see which government the Palestinians put in place. Bibi will lose vote to more right wing parties if the money helps Hamas conduct attacks against Israel.


    I don’t expect a storm because it is in no one’s interest. However, when brinkmanship is employed, sometimes you fall of the edge. It is not in Assad’s or HA’s interest to start a war, but they do want to poke Israel. So let’s hope they don’t make a stupid mistake.

    Posted by AIG | May 16, 2011, 1:28 pm
  164. AIG,

    I happen to disagree with you on that one, as we discussed.
    Of course, if Hamas or whoever were to start provoking (rockets, etc), then you’d be right. But I frankly do not see that happening.
    I’m of the opinion that with the mess in Syria now (and as we saw, the hijinks of this weekend), both the PA and Hamas should be distancing themselves from anything to do with Syria or HA or its agents provocateurs.

    I heard some story this morning about Bibi’s upcoming visit to the USA. Martin Indyk is of the opinion that Bibi needs to get off his ass and make some kind of proposal, with the Palestinian going to the UN soon, and the US basically not doing much to push the peace process. Indyk seemed to share the same point of view I mentioned to you last week, that Israel (Bibi more specifically) needs to stop being so passive and that the onus is on him, to a large extent now, to stop seeming the “rejectionist”.

    Posted by Bad Vilbel | May 16, 2011, 1:37 pm
  165. AIG,

    It is not in Syria’s interest to start a direct war with Israel. However a proxy war with HA vs Israel might be doing the trick if Israel leaves Syria alone as in the past and Syria goes about the bloody suppression without anyone looking…
    Iran might be tempted to acquiesce with Syrian wishes of the regime is teetering.

    Posted by danny | May 16, 2011, 1:38 pm
  166. It is not in may nature to say so. But a lot of people are being killed in Syria and I am not sure about the medical help the injured are getting. The way Assad behave, city by city, zanga by zanga, house by house he does not have all the soldiers he would like to have. By increasing now, after the buses brought to the border by Syria, the IDF in the Golan some pressure might be taken off the Syrian people.

    Posted by Rani Hazbani | May 16, 2011, 1:56 pm
  167. نعتقد أن الصحافي الذي أجرى الحوار مع السيد خدام لصالح التلفزيون الإسباني قام بعملية خداع وفبركة وتضليل لتوريط السيد خدام في الإطلالة على (التلفزيون الإسرائيلي) وبالتالي نعتقد أن هذا العمل إنما هو خدمة تقدمها إسرائيل لدعم نظام الطاغية بشار الأسد عبر محاولات بائسة ويائسة لتشويه صورة المعارضة السورية

    Khaddam is now claiming that he was “tricked” by a Spanish reporter in Brussels in his latest interview and that was in essence an Israeli ploy meant to help the Assad regime and a short-cut in order to discredit the Syrian opposition…

    Hezbollah and SHN will never start a war on anyone’s orders, Period. If there is to be a war in Lebanon, it will be another attempt by the US/Israeli war criminals to settle old scores.

    Posted by HK | May 16, 2011, 2:04 pm
  168. BV,

    Probably Bibi should be proactive, but seriously, what is the use? Israel will not accept the right of return and the Palestinians will most probably never agree to a solution without it.

    Posted by AIG | May 16, 2011, 2:21 pm
  169. From Time Immemorial

    IMO, BB and the PA have reached a brick wall.

    Abbas and the PA want Israel to stop building outside of the green line before negotiations resume, and BB is saying that only negotiations will determine that.

    So, either the parties agree to start negotiating further of the impasse/status quo continues.

    If and when the UN votes on the subject, the US will veto. I doubt Obama will vote against Israel considering the backlash he’ll get from Americans who are pro-Israel.

    Posted by Akbar Palace | May 16, 2011, 2:43 pm
  170. In an election year; Obama dare not do anything to anger the Jewish/Israeli Lobby..

    Posted by danny | May 16, 2011, 2:52 pm
  171. AIG 169,

    So you’re pretty much saying neither side will compromise and we’re doomed to an eternity of this conflict? Why so pessimistic today?

    I think that we ALL know the ultimate solution will involve both sides compromising on some items in return for the other side also compromising. It’s purely a matter of posturing and will, in my opinion.

    This is not a mathematical problem that has no solution. The solution is there and is known by all. People just have to be willing to accept it at some point.

    The right of return will be in large part traded away for something in return. The question is what exactly.

    There is absolutely no point in holding a card if you don’t play it eventually. That ace in your hand is worth no different than a 2 unless you use it. This goes for both sides.

    The problem is, everyone seems convinced that if they keep holding off, they can have their cake and eat it. Problem is, world doesn’t work that way. The only way you get your cake AND eat it is if the other party suddenly ceases to exist. And we both know the Palestinians are not suddenly gonna get teleported to Alpha Centauri. Nor are the Jews of Israel gonna suddenly pack up and move to Europe or Canada.

    The sooner both sides stop wishing for this bizarrely unrealistic ending, the sooner we’ll just be able to implement the solution.

    Posted by Bad Vilbel | May 16, 2011, 3:02 pm
  172. BV,

    I used to think like you but as time passes it becomes clearer to me that the Palestinians cannot give up the right of return without falling into disunity and even a civil war. Even if the PA agrees to rescind the right of return, why would the Palestinians in the diaspora accept it? What can the right of return be exchanged for? Money? Most Palestinians reject that out of hand.

    We have to accept years of low intensity war. It’s not good for anybody, but some problems are intractable.

    Posted by AIG | May 16, 2011, 3:53 pm
  173. The thing is, the Palestinians in the diaspora really have no say in the matter.
    I know it sucks. But I’m speaking in brutal realism here.
    What matters is that the Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza accept something, and Israel accepts something. And the regional state actors accept the same thing.
    If the people on the ground (Israel and the West Bank/Gaza Palestinians) accept a peace settlement and live side by side, even in “cold peace”, the rest will follow.
    There really isn’t much any Palestinians living in Lebanon or Syria or Jordan can do. They’re not on the ground.

    Not sure I phrased all this very clearly, but whatever. Hopefully the point comes across.

    Same goes for Jews, btw. What matters is what the Israelis in Israel think and accept. Not the militant Zionists in New York, or the Jews in the former USSR. In the end, once you do sign some kind of agreement, it is up to those implementing it on the ground to make it happen. Those living thousands (or even hundreds) of miles away, with some kinda claim on paper, won’t have the same kind of impact.

    Hell, they don’t even today. When was the last time the refugees in Lebanon/Syria/Jordan have much input into the peace process or lack thereof? 1982?

    PS: Don’t confuse true Palestinian representation here with “proxies” like the PFLP-GC or other such non-representative actors. That is another matter entirely, IMO.

    Posted by Bad Vilbel | May 16, 2011, 4:20 pm
  174. In unrelated news…this here is an example of why it’s so hard to take a certain camp seriously.

    Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad came under new pressure Sunday, as an influential cleric charged that he has been “bewitched” by a controversial senior aide and key lawmakers renewed their impeachment threat.

    Ahmadinejad is behaving “unnaturally” and needs to be “saved,” Ayatollah Mohammad Taghi Mesbah Yazdi, a former supporter of the president, told the weekly Shoma magazine.

    The cleric said Ahmadinejad’s top adviser, Esfandiar Rahim Mashaei, has used has hypnotism, spells or charms to take control of Iran’s elected leader. “I am almost certain that he has been bewitched,” Yazdi said.

    We are still expected to believe a certain side (I am talking here, in general terms, about the Iran/Syria/Hezbollah) and their conspiracy theories, day in and day out, when continuously demonstrate such a complete lack of credibility. Why/How people believe ANYTHING these clowns ever say is beyond me.

    That’s why I got so frustrated by “Alex” in the previous thread about Syria. The point I tried making repeatedly that it’s hard to have faith (as he seemed to have) in people who show day after day, a complete disregard for some of the most basic tenets of every day life, common sense, scientifically proven facts and well…basic truths in general.

    When someone continuously tells me that aliens are coming in 2012 to destroy us all, or that some magical joojoo curse from a leprechaun is the reason he can’t get it up…well, forgive me if I don’t put much stock in their other claims…

    Posted by Bad Vilbel | May 16, 2011, 4:31 pm
  175. BV #174,

    Please enlighten me on how to explain to a Palestinian from the diaspora that he has no say in the negotiation? i.e. no weight or any kind of importance regarding the destiny of his own country/land/nation (etc)

    Also, please explain me what is the logic behind such comparison of yours: militant Zionist = Palestinian from the diaspora. Historical facts are definitely not part of this logic, but you may have other evidences. Show me ya habibi

    Posted by Nour | May 16, 2011, 4:54 pm
  176. AIG #173

    On what do you base your statement that the Palestinian diaspora would not accept money to settle the dispute?

    How much are you willing to offer ?

    Posted by R2D2 | May 16, 2011, 5:07 pm
  177. Nour,

    You support a regime that for 40 years has given Syrians no say whatsoever in running their country. How do you explain that to Syrians?

    Posted by AIG | May 16, 2011, 5:11 pm
  178. AIG,

    Why are assuming that I’m supporting the Syrian regime? I’ve just read my comment once again, and nothing can let you think that I am supporting Damascus.

    Now, it’s my turn to make assumptions, by assuming that you don’t want to answer to my simple question and you are diverting the attention by talking about Syrians where the subject here are the Palestinians.

    So may I ask again, with a more refined question: given the fact that the diaspora is a major constituency of the Palestinian people, is it realistic to push them aside of the negotiations?

    Maybe this constituency is not “open” enough for you? Maybe one of the purposes would be to isolate them from the people “on the ground”, to create another division amongst the Palestinians?

    It can be interesting though, let’s say that Hamas join Fatah in the recognition of Israel…Perhaps, the new “Condition” would be for the Palestinians to renounce to the right of return. Actually, that sounds quite coherent to me…the right of return can become the new division factor between Palestinians.

    Posted by Nour | May 16, 2011, 5:31 pm
  179. AIG,

    Place fair value on the property that belongs to you and you are living on and at which price you would be willing to sell and relocate (within Israel … or Spain, for all I care).

    Place fair value … and then let’s discuss how much Europeans and how much the state of Israel needs to contribute to resolve the dispute with the Palestinians on the land you’ve been allowed to occupy for reasons accountable for by modern civilized society.

    Posted by R2D2 | May 16, 2011, 5:38 pm
  180. Nour,

    I know you support the Assad regime from your posts on SC.

    I am pessimistic about an agreement because I do believe the diaspora Palestinians will have a say and even if they don’t they can easily be spoilers.

    Posted by AIG | May 16, 2011, 5:58 pm
  181. I am at a loss why the Israelis among others keep expressing surprise about the Nakba March when this has been in the planning , openly on FB, for a long time. Actually the planned March was a little bit of a disappointment since the expectations were for much larger crowds all along the Arab Israeli borders.

    Posted by Ghassan Karam | May 16, 2011, 6:09 pm
  182. AIG,

    It is another Nour, believe me.
    These are my first posts, and I already have to change my moniker 😉

    My new pseudo is 3issa.

    Thank you for your answer.

    Posted by 3issa | May 16, 2011, 6:12 pm
  183. Of course they have a say…..
    …..question is will they be heard…

    Those authorities that represent the Palestinians and the rest of the Arab regimes have just the same stake as the Israelis in this crime.

    It is going to be very very interesting in the near future with the Arab street gaining a louder voice. They support the people of Palestine where their own governments don’t, or where their Govts. pretend they do but don’t.
    BV is right in his assessment. Israel needs to heed the calls of the Arab masses, and act upon the opportunity now before the M.E. reshapes itself.It is sluggish at best.

    Posted by Maverick | May 16, 2011, 6:12 pm
  184. Ghassan…

    So you don’t think HA or Syria had anything to do with the sudden massing of protesters in the border? This was an organic protest movement?


    Israel should heed which calls from the “Masses”? I think if they were to listen to the masses, they may just end up packing and leaving the region, no? 😀

    Posted by Gabriel | May 16, 2011, 6:19 pm
  185. Gabriel,
    I do not know whether the official Syrian government took advantage of the occasion or not. It would have been irrational of them not to have used it to promote their point of view. There has been talk about this march for weeks.
    It is not important whether one thinks that Israel is legitimate or not, what is important is that the local authorities in Lebanon, Syria allowed the demonstrators to crsh an international border. Would we have allowed our borders to be crashed from the other side? Of course not. And obviously the Israelis are to blame for not taking enough precautions. This was always advertised as the march to ignite Intifada III. Please spare me the totally unacceptable behaviour of the Lebanese army, the Syrian army and obviously the IDF.

    Posted by Ghassan Karam | May 16, 2011, 6:33 pm
  186. Nour,

    I believe your original question was addressed at me. I will attempt to respond.
    Please understand (and I stated this clearly in my original post) that I was not expressing MY OPINION, or MY BELIEFs of what SHOULD be right or wrong. Those are entirely different matters (One can think that it’s not fair to pay taxes, but still have to pay them in the real world, for example).

    Do I think it’s fair that the diaspora has very little effect (and note again, the difference between the word “effect” and the word “right”). No I do not think that is fair. But that is entirely besides the point of my original statement.

    My original statement was not one of opinion, or one of fairness.

    I was stating that I believe in the real world of politics (which has almost nothing to do with what we perceive as fair or unfair), concrete actions are usually mostly a factor of the people on the ground.

    Humor me for the following scenario. A pure hypothetical. Consider it an academic exercise.

    If tomorrow, Israel and the Palestinians of the WB/Gaza agreed on final borders, full recognition, etc. and a peace deal was signed, with the full support of Washington, Iran, Syria and the rest of the Arab world. What could the few million descendants of refugee scattered in Lebanon/Jordan/Syria do? If their host countries (Lebanon/Jordan/Syria), being fully behind this new peace treaty, cracked down on any attempts at these refugees arming, or forming some kind of 1970s style PLO…What could they do?

    Not much.

    Let me put it a different way. If in the 1960s and 70s, the Arab countries had not chosen to reject Israel, and help fund the PLO and provide it the means and encouragement to “reject” Israel, would the PLO have been much of a factor? I believe not.

    I’ll throw one last example at you to illustrate my point. The Armenian people have a history not unlike that of the Palestinians. Driven from their homeland in Turkey over 80 years ago, spread around the middle east, etc.
    The big difference is that there was no political decision by Arab countries to support a right of return, or an armed struggle. So nothing came of it. The refugees were assimilated for the most part into their host countries and that was the end of that.

    Had there been a Syria/Iran/Arab front back then, and had the Arab world at large rejected these Armenian refugees, put them in camps and sloganeered a so-called “Right of return” to Turkey, and then funded armed groups of Armenians to attack Turkey, and form some kind of ALO (Armenian Liberation Organization) and so on, the Armenians would be very much like the Palestinians are today…

    Point of this little academic exercise is this: I believe (and of course, I could be wrong, this is a theory) that the diaspora has very little impact on the ground IF (and this is a big IF) there is no powerbrokers backing said diaspora, and if the people who are local to the matter (West Bank / Gaza) happen to be perfectly fine with a peace settlement.

    I’ll repeat one last time: I am not passing judgement here on whether that is FAIR or not…

    Posted by Bad Vilbel | May 16, 2011, 6:38 pm
  187. Israel should heed which calls from the “Masses”? I think if they were to listen to the masses, they may just end up packing and leaving the region, no?

    Indeed 😉

    That’s why I don’t think that Israel has any chance to be accepted by the masses, be it now or later. The region can reshape itself perpetually, but still they will never be such things as “acceptation of Israel from the Arab masses”. In that perspective, AIG and me are sharing the same pessimism, the difference is that I am convinced that demography and the shifting of global power centers play against Israel, and AIG “might” be convinced that they can hold the fortress for ever.

    Posted by 3issa | May 16, 2011, 6:41 pm
  188. Maverick,

    Of course they have a say…..
    …..question is will they be heard…

    That was my point. Somewhat. Thanks.

    Posted by Bad Vilbel | May 16, 2011, 6:41 pm
  189. Note to AIG

    It’s a different Nour. See above

    Posted by Qifa Nabki | May 16, 2011, 6:45 pm
  190. Gabe,

    In light of the seismic shifts in the region, and the Palestinian re awakening ( via unification and the number of demonstrations in the Arab world in support of the P), it is a great opportunity to make some progress on the Arab/Israeli conflict.
    The masses we are referring to through their upheavals have swayed policies in their own respective countries, even ousting their governments. Lets just say, the Arab masses have awaken from their slumber and can easily affect political policies ,more so than say a few years ago.
    Israel and the West had ignored the Arab masses for too long relying on the respective regimes to control the herds. It is a much different situation now.
    The Middle East is re writing a new future at the present time, Governments are undergoing major shifts, it is a critical time.
    Im just saying Israel can really take this opportunity to create a fresh path and reach the youth and the next generation of the Arab masses. Its not like they can continue this trench warfare as their position is becoming increasingly isolated.

    Posted by Maverick | May 16, 2011, 6:55 pm
  191. BV,

    Your comparison about the displaced Armenian people who arrived after the death marches during the Genocide…through the desert to Syria and later to other hospitable Arab countries is not right. Arab countries felt responsible for the displacement of the Palestinians from their land as well some kinship.
    Armenian diaspora until now demands reparations for the lost land and looted fortune from the Turkish government. The court cases against the Turkish government have just started taking shape. I think the Palestinian diaspora has all the right to ask for reparations if not for a right of return. I doubt it if any Palestinian in diaspora would like to go to a country; Israel proper; where they are strangers to the land and language. The issue I believe is more to illicit other concessions; like having the whole West bank (sans the settlements) among others.

    Finally; I thought since you are half Armenian by ancestry would have known that the Armenian Genocide did happen in 1915 not 80 years ago.

    Posted by danny | May 16, 2011, 7:07 pm
  192. BV,

    We have to agree to disagree there, in my opinion it is too easy to separate the people on the ground and the people abroad. I mean that it is unlikely that the people on the ground will sign a paper allowing them either to return to their homes or granting them a State, while preventing the others abroad to enjoy of these advantages.

    I’m not sure that the Armenian/Palestinian comparison is the more relevant there (partly because the fact that the Ottomans was already ruling the land,,, they didn’t came far away from the Altai Mountains claiming that Anatolia is and has always been theirs…of course I’m not trying to justify or excuse any kind of crime there…).

    Here is another comparison: You and your family are living peacefully in your apartment with a nice young guy. This guy will be joined by his cousins who have been mistreated by the landlord of the buildings three blocks away, and these guys need space. Among these guys some would like you to join them in the living room, others would like you to stay calm in your room and others would like to throw you out of the window. By the way, when these guys moved in your apartment, your wife and kids has been expelled to your neighbors place. Do you really think that YOU can find an agreement with the guys occupying your place, that you may get access to the kitchen, while your wife and kids are living in the neighbours toilet and cellar?

    So for the trivial presentation there, but it is how I perceive the situation, and how I understand the relation between the diaspora and the people in the ground.

    Posted by 3issa | May 16, 2011, 7:24 pm
  193. Maverick,

    You wrote a lot, and said nothing :D.

    What do the Arab “masses” want?

    – Right of Return?
    – One state solution?
    – Two state solution?
    – Return to 67 borders, no right of return?


    Turkey has recognized finally the “genocide” against the Armenians? That’s news to me.

    Posted by Gabriel | May 16, 2011, 7:27 pm
  194. I’m not sure that the Armenian/Palestinian comparison is the more relevant there (partly because the fact that the Ottomans was already ruling the land,,, they didn’t came far away from the Altai Mountains claiming that Anatolia is and has always been theirs…of course I’m not trying to justify or excuse any kind of crime there…).

    Well Issa,

    Technically, you are right. They did come from the Altai Mountains and did take that land by force :D. It may have taken them 500 years to eject the Armenians out of the land.

    What relevance the clause “the land belonged to them” is not immediately clear to me. Whether the land belonged to them or not, they are there. And no one is contesting that! :D.

    Posted by Gabriel | May 16, 2011, 7:32 pm
  195. Gabriel,

    Did I say that? I said they are pursuing their rights through the courts. Turkey has stayed steadfast in their denial along with help of the Israeli governments and Jewish Lobby in D.C.
    Sorry if you misunderstood my point. For example the land where the biggest American base is in Turkey at incirlik is owned by Armenians. Their grand kids are suing the Turkish government through the courts to take back what is legally theirs.

    “Well Issa,

    Technically, you are right. They did come from the Altai Mountains and did take that land by force 😀 . It may have taken them 500 years to eject the Armenians out of the land.


    Posted by danny | May 16, 2011, 7:53 pm
  196. Deep down they want fairness.
    The details are left to the devils.
    They dont care what the solution is as long as they’re living on their soil without hindrance.
    Just like the millions across the ME who chant “Isqat Al Nizam”. They couldnt give two hoots what ideology runs the show, or any specific details.They just want out of the stagnant puddle of shit theyre in.
    But regardless of solutions, Im just saying, perhaps naively Israel has a window of opportunity to be less draconian.A little bit of pro-activity wouldn’t hurt because sooner rather than later it will find itself in a bit of a tight place.
    Now that its relationship with Egypt and Turkey suffered a major blow, and a rising counter pro-Israeli movement in the U.S., it might just be the time to be a little more considerate.
    Lol…in the most simplistic language I can muster

    Posted by Maverick | May 16, 2011, 7:56 pm
  197. Danny,

    I doubt very much the Turks would compensate the Armenians for anything if they can’t even acknowledge doing anything wrong. Court cases in Europe/the US non-withstanding, since I doubt any of them will be binding.

    The Israeli lobby has been no doubt playing nice with the Turks for many years, since they have been regional allies. But now, with diplomatic tiffs over Gaza, and Turkey’s recent re-alignment to the East, I won’t be surprised if they will start singing a new tune in the not so distant future.

    Posted by Gabriel | May 16, 2011, 8:02 pm
  198. Gabriel,

    I guess time will tell. However as far as the Turks and Israel are concerned; I would not pay too much attention to the “public noise”… If Turkey really wanted to sever any ties with Israel they would have abrogated the military treaties that they have with them…(I think 6 or 17 of them)…

    Let’s see Erdogan put his money where his mouth is !!

    Posted by danny | May 16, 2011, 8:50 pm
  199. I meant 16 or 17…

    Posted by danny | May 16, 2011, 8:50 pm

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