Some Background Reading on U.S. Military Assistance to Lebanon

This one's busted. Maybe the Lebanese could use it?

This one’s busted. Maybe the Lebanese could use it?

News outlets are reporting that the U.S. government has approved a startling increase of military aid to Lebanon, increasing the size of the country’s potent assault helicopter force by an unprecedented 25%.

“Six Huey 2 helicopters have been delivered to Lebanon as part of bilateral military assistance,” [a diplomatic source] said on condition of anonymity.

The air force has 24 U.S. Huey helicopters and 11 French-made Gazelles, both of which can be equipped with guns and missiles.

Another diplomatic source informed Qifa Nabki that “the Huey-2 helicopter is a devastating weapon that sends good-for-nothings scurrying wherever it is deployed.”

As if this magnanimous sharing of sensitive military technology were not enough, the U.S. Embassy also confirmed that “last week, the U.S. gave a $29.8 million, 42-meter coastal security craft to the Lebanese Navy to patrol and protect Lebanon’s sea border.”

For background on the U.S.-Lebanese military relationship, here are some useful backgrounders from the Qifa Nabki archives (circa 2010):

U.S. Approves Massive Arms Shipment to Lebanon

Armed Caravans

U.S. Military Assistance and the LAF

The Saga Continues: Nick Noe Responds to Hokayem, Schenker

The Inside Scoop on U.S. Military Aid to the LAF 


72 thoughts on “Some Background Reading on U.S. Military Assistance to Lebanon

  1. QN,

    Perhaps if the Lebanese army could absorb and dismantle the Iranian-backed Hezbollah organization, the US could provide better weapon systems to Lebanon.

    You can’t have your cake and eat it.

    Posted by Akbar Palace | December 12, 2012, 10:52 am
  2. Akbar Palace,

    If the US provided better weapons to the Lebanese army, Hezbollah would no longer have an excuse to set up its own parallel defence system….

    Posted by Blackstar | December 12, 2012, 11:41 am
  3. Blackstar,

    Let’s not talk about hypothetical excuses and what-if scenarios. The US isn’t going to send sophisicated weaponry to Lebanon while a foreign-backed organization amasses weapons on Lebanese terrortory.

    Lebanon, like all countries, have to decide if they want to join the West or “resist” the West. By allowing Hezbollah to act freely in Lebanon, the Lebanes have already made their decision.

    Posted by Akbar Palace | December 12, 2012, 12:35 pm
  4. Holy crap!

    Is this all the Lebanese armed forces has in their fleet of helicopters? 35 assault helicopters!

    Posted by Gabriel | December 12, 2012, 12:55 pm
  5. There are reports about Lebanese requests and the very recent contract awarded for choppers in the following link. Also of note is the contract for the delivered naval vessel.

    No freebies and it’s interesting to note the $30mil difference in the original July DSCA notification of a potential sale and the eventual contract.


    Posted by lally | December 12, 2012, 3:09 pm
  6. These won’t be that useful as the Syrian islamist militias have obtained anti aircraft missiles. The best counter weapon for an islamist militia is another one. I would stick with Hezbollah.

    Posted by AIG | December 12, 2012, 6:27 pm
  7. That’s just we need. More crazy Mullahs with guns.

    Progress guaranteed in the region for the next 100 years.

    Posted by Gabriel | December 12, 2012, 6:56 pm
  8. Just progress, and join the west

    Posted by 3issa | December 12, 2012, 7:53 pm
  9. It ain’t progress until all religious parties are armed.

    Posted by AIG | December 12, 2012, 7:59 pm
  10. Look on the bright side, maybe these copters could be useful in fighting forest fires in the summer. Something is better than nothing.

    Posted by Ras Beirut | December 12, 2012, 10:59 pm
  11. Something’s screwed up when Zionists agree with Baathists:


    Posted by Akbar Palace | December 12, 2012, 11:21 pm
  12. Hueys — aren’t they Vietnam War era? What’s next, P-47s for the Lebanese Air Force?

    Posted by James Reilly | December 13, 2012, 7:52 am
  13. Dr. Reilly

    The Lebanese Air Force has no need for P-47s, as it is already equipped with several formidable Hawker Hunters.

    Posted by Qifa Nabki | December 13, 2012, 9:13 am
  14. “Formidable”… 🙂

    Posted by Bad Vilbel | December 13, 2012, 2:06 pm
  15. Following your link to the Wikipedia entry for the Hawker Hunters, QN, I was amused by the following: ” Today, the Lebanese AF is the only military air arm in the world still operating the Hunter.”

    Posted by Bad Vilbel | December 13, 2012, 2:08 pm
  16. Unique as usual. 😛

    Posted by danny | December 13, 2012, 2:14 pm
  17. From the wiki link re Hueys’ above;

    “Israel withdrew its UH-1s from service in 2002, after thirty three years of service. They were replaced by Sikorsky UH-60 Blackhawk helicopters given to Israel after complying with American requests for restraint following Iraqi Scud missile attacks during Operation Desert Storm. While some were passed on to pro-Israeli militias in Lebanon……,”

    “pro-Israeli militias” had their own choppers? Really?

    Posted by lally | December 13, 2012, 5:12 pm
  18. Forget American Assistance and Hizballah. Lebanon should hire the Syrian rebels with their home made weapons;


    Posted by Maverick | December 13, 2012, 5:45 pm
  19. Maverick,

    I’m sure when the rebels are done with those, and take control of the Syrian army’s cache of weapons, they’ll sell those masterpieces to Lebanon 😀

    Posted by Gabriel | December 13, 2012, 5:55 pm
  20. Our main man Okab can be of benefit here.

    Posted by Maverick | December 13, 2012, 7:56 pm
  21. Hahaha.

    Maybe radwan can get the scoop when the deal goes down. Lol

    Posted by Gabriel | December 13, 2012, 8:38 pm
  22. lally,

    They were referring to HA. 😛

    Posted by danny | December 14, 2012, 7:17 am
  23. WTF is going on… so sick of all the killing everywhere

    Posted by Vulcan | December 14, 2012, 5:55 pm
  24. this is just … sad.

    Posted by racha | December 15, 2012, 5:15 am
  25. http://www.independent.co.uk/voices/comment/syria-the-descent-into-holy-war-8420309.html

    If you haven’t seen the gruesome video, you probably don’t want to.

    What are the implications for Lebanon if
    a) al qaeda gains an even stronger foothold in Syria
    b) if an ISLAMIC state comes to fruition in Syria

    FSA/M14/West are going for the jugular. I think this is a political/military miscalculation, and that the first country to pay the price will be Lebanon. The resistance in Syria has been recently radicalized and we are at a point of no return. Nasrallah Adressed Al Qaeda directly today in his speech; my question is will Al Qaeda/Nusra take up the fight with Bashar’s Ally Hezbollah?

    Posted by tamer k. | December 16, 2012, 1:38 pm
  26. Going for the jugular? Seems much more tentative than that. What do you think “the West” should do, assuming they are doing anything besides recognizing one side of the opposition and calling other sides terrorists, etc?

    Posted by Qifa Nabki | December 16, 2012, 1:59 pm
  27. QN, yes it is more tentative than that if you are the Obama administration, as evidenced by their unilateral move to blacklist Nusra. It was a clear political message, but its too little too late.

    I think for Lebanon’s sake, Syria’s sake, the west needs to diffuse the situation in Syria, it’s a war of attrition with no end in sight. You can’t recognize the FSA and blacklist Nusra, they are one in of the same, and the FSA has claimed that much. This is mujahadeen circa 1980 being played all over again.

    Bashar is a brutal dictator, the Lebanese know this first hand, but the revolution is now out of control, Bashar is not going to fall in months. Okab/Saudi/Qatar/USA can’t prop up one “secular” FSA group and expect the al qaeda/islamists FSA inspired groups to fail.

    An Islamic/Qaeda inspired foothold in Syria will be a catastrophe for Christians/Allawis/Shias/Minorities in the Levant, the best west can do now is work for a grand deal on Syria.

    Basically my political calculation is, that if/when the Bathists are purged from Syria, it’s going to be an “Islamic Victory”, and I don’t see Hezbollah and an Islamic Sunni Syrian government reconciling their views.

    The secular FSA politicians in Marrakesh can’t expect to ride the military coattails of the fierce Islamic/Nusra Brigades to victory, and expect to cut them out of the political spoils of war. I think that is their calculation, along with M14 and other western countries. It doesn’t work that way.

    If the Jihadis can bring down the all powerful Syrian Arab Army, why wouldn’t they move on to take on Hezbollah’s Bashar Loving Militia?

    Posted by tamer k. | December 16, 2012, 3:42 pm
  28. Paul Salem


    Short and Long term impact of the Syria Conflict on Lebanon

    Warning – Long read

    Posted by tamer k. | December 16, 2012, 5:14 pm
  29. Shukran 3azizi.

    Posted by Qifa Nabki | December 16, 2012, 5:39 pm
  30. I think there is only one strategy that will work in Syria and that is to support the relatively moderate Islamists against the crazy ones. That means giving up all pretense that Syria will be a secular state and hope the Ikhwan can contain Al-Qaida and the Salafis. In exchange for this support it should be made clear that all talk of “unification” with Lebanon should be shelved for a few decades.

    If the West does not support the Islamists, they may come to power anyway and contain the crazies by directing them at Lebanon. Militias once created are very difficult to disarm. It can only be done by strong states with abundant will power. Just as Hezbollah has not given up its weapons, expect the same in Syria. The only way to contain these militias is to create a strong state in Syria. It cannot be done unless it is an Islamic state. There is just no other way. The worst thing the West can do is push for democratic reforms in Syria while the militias are still in place. That will make getting rid of them impossible.

    For a while I had hoped that like in Solomon’s judgement (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Judgment_of_Solomon) at least one side would decide that it is quite stupid to kill the “baby”. Apparently, this is not the case.

    Posted by AIG | December 16, 2012, 5:44 pm
  31. Ohhh relax, The Islamo- F**k nuts will wither away as soon as there is a bit of order around the house. These Jihadis love the adventure, they’re there for the ride not the spoils. They’re only claim will be a power snatch that gets them more involvement in the destiny of the country, let’s not get carried away by believing these crazies will be running the show, the great majority of Syrians will not allow it.
    Actually, if concerned parties got their heads out of the sand way back, there wouldn’t have been this unchecked rise to power, what did you expect really when there was no one else to counter the barbaric nature of the regime, no decent support whether weapons or cash, no organisation, nothing! the world stood by and watched the cock fight each hedging their bets on the gruesome bloodbath.
    But it’s never too late, the international community will huddle together as soon as they see the regime on it’s last leg ready to collapse and swoop in disposing of the Jihadi groups but thanking them for services rendered by giving them a piece of the pie. Nothing more.

    Posted by Maverick | December 16, 2012, 6:35 pm
  32. Maverick,

    I have a bridge or two to sell you, and also a North Korean unicorn.

    Posted by AIG | December 17, 2012, 1:26 am
  33. Maverick,

    Don’t “Islamo-F**nuts” as you put it, have not really withered away in Afghanistan (20+ years after the Soviets left), or Iraq, or Libya. What makes you think they’ll wither away in Syria after order is restored? Also, who’s going to restore this order you speak of?

    Posted by Bad Vilbel | December 17, 2012, 2:50 pm
  34. Lets give the Syrians some credit, they are far from being like the Afghans, they will deal with the “Islamo-F***nuts when they are done with Assad.

    Posted by Vulcan | December 17, 2012, 3:18 pm
  35. Absolutely Vulcan, whatever “like Afghans” means, you are right. Splendid intelligence.

    Posted by 3issa | December 17, 2012, 3:46 pm
  36. 3issa, have you ever been to Afghanistan ?

    Posted by Vulcan | December 17, 2012, 3:54 pm
  37. no, so please tell me what you found out about their culture? and maybe you can enlighten me on how the Syrians are not “like these Afghans”…

    Posted by 3issa | December 17, 2012, 5:17 pm
  38. BV, AIG, Vulcan

    There’s a difference between Islamo-F’nuts and Islamists in power. That much is obvious. Syria might have a lot more representatives of Islamic political ideology after Bashar but the model will be closer to Turkey rather than Afghanistan or Iran/KSA even. By saying whither away, I don’t mean disappear completely, I’m referring to their legitimacy in power via popular support. They do make the best anti-colonial/anti-regime fighters and hence the free hand they’ve been given in many arenas. They do the dirty work when no one else will so to speak. But how will they fare as representatives of the Syrian people. From experience and it is limited relatively speaking, Syrians by and large are, if not secular, very tolerant of others and prefer a democratic multi party system. I could be wrong, but I’m also very wary of those who keep making a mountain out of a molehill when it comes to the Jihadis trying to whip up fear.
    In terms of restoration, I believe the international community and/or parties concerned are more vehement in their opposition to the Islamo-crazies than they are to the regime. The regime trashed the joint for two years and all they got was a slap on the hand here and there while one bad turn by the rebels/Jihadis and the MSM are all over it portraying them as evil incarnates. The U.S sent clear messages a week ago by blacklisting the main Jihadi group. The Europeans will join and so would the Russians if Bashar’s end is imminent.They all have a vested interest to keep the Islamo-crazies away from political power.So, I believe the international community are waiting for one side to bleed to death before escalating intervention,read:wait for Bashar to capitulate and swoop in.In the end the fear of the Islamo-F’nuts are way overblown.

    Posted by Maverick | December 17, 2012, 7:50 pm
  39. The “Islamo-F**nuts” are still around in Afghanistan because they are supported by the Pakistani state. Likewise, so long as Saudi Arabia thinks the Salafis are a good weapon against Iranian influence, they will remain.

    Posted by Will | December 18, 2012, 11:31 am
  40. And as for international intervention causing them to disappear, NATO and tens of thousands of US troops were not able to do it in Afghanistan. That does not mean it is impossible but it does mean that counting on the international community to do it is nonsense. As I wrote above, the only realistic way to manage the crazies is to have the “moderates” do it. The secular elites are on the way out already and it does not matter what they prefer. Most of them supported Assad and that did not turn out too well.

    “They do the dirty work when no one else will so to speak.”

    And that is one of the main reasons Arab countries are in the situation they are. Because the secular elites do not understand that sometimes you have to fight. There is just no other way. Instead, the elites just flee. It happened in Palestine and it is happening in Syria and it is happening in slow motion in Lebanon. If you leave the fighting to the militias of the islamo fascists and just plain fascists they will demand a large part of the cake.

    The islamic wave can only be countered from within Arab countries. Nothing else will work. There is nothing the West can do about it, its options are limited to bad ones and worse ones. As usual Israel is a lab for this mess. Does Israel have any good options with Hamas in Gaza? All our policies are blunt and cause as many problems as they solve. You cannot bomb or sanction an idea out of people’s heads. They have to come to the conclusion themselves that the idea is bad. And unlike Nazism or Japanese militarism or Arab nationalism for example, Islam is a deeply rooted hundreds of years old great tradition with over a billion followers world wide. So the more radical manifestations of this idea are not going to be so easily dealt with. For example, Qardawi is considered “main stream” and that guy is -70 on a liberalism scale going from 0 to 100. This process is going to take decades, and who knows where it will end.

    Do not count on the international community or think that the Turkish model is somehow going to prevail instantaneously. The road will be long and most of the time the choice will be between bad and worse.

    Posted by AIG | December 18, 2012, 12:29 pm
  41. Will…

    LoL. Finally, someone saying the unsayable.

    All the rest:

    Without “black”, there are no shades of Grey. The sort of compartmentalization I see going on regarding the various “breeds” of Islamists ignores the reality that what we see before us really is nothing more than a display of various Shades of Grey. On one end of the spectrum is the liquor imbibing Muslim, and over on the other end of the spectrum are the present day Almohads.

    They go by different names: Wahabis in one article, Salafis in another. The sort of distinctions that allow our gracious host to make a living. These distinctions are by and large academic.

    Their presence is “convenient” for some of the more “moderate” forces.

    They will be contained when their presence and services are no longer required.

    In the case of Iraq- preferred battleground of the Sunni Jihadi some years back- it was when the Coalition forces played nice with the Sunni establishment that they got the situation relatively under control: This per our resident expert on all matters Sunni- the one and only Iceman.

    In the case of Syria… who knows what it will take, but I am sure that whatever leadership is brewing there will have to be suitable enough to the puppet masters in Riyadh or Ankara. I wouldn’t bank on a Syrian solution to the issue.

    Posted by Gabriel | December 18, 2012, 1:33 pm
  42. I was over at the local university bookshop a few days ago, looking through the most recent offerings on display. They had a display especially dedicated to the “Arab Spring”.

    Front and center were some books dedicated to Morsi.

    My oh my has the engineering professor (or was it student?) from some Cali university come a long way: The figurehead of the new Arab Spring movement.

    The display showed some quotes- which I assume are attributed to Morsi himself. They weren’t referenced of course, but here’s what they essentially wrote:

    “We do not know when the Grace of God will finally find its way to a person, and when they will accept Islam. For Muslims, every Non-Muslim is someone who will potentially become Muslim in the future. This is why Muslims are enjoined to treat everyone with kindness, even their worst enemies.”


    The Western Multi-cultural model is on a collision course with alternate models. One says that we should respect differences, because difference should be highlighted, and because it is a wonderful thing.

    And the other- which apparently has takers in over 50% of at least the Egyptian populace believes that the difference ought to be requested only in-so much as those that are different may one day see the light and earn the right of your respect.

    The Middle East has a long way to go.

    A very long way to go indeed.

    Posted by Gabriel | December 18, 2012, 1:45 pm
  43. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to Dr. Qifa Nabki and all the fellow Qifa Nabkiers

    Salud, Amor y Dinero!

    Posted by Vulcan | December 20, 2012, 2:21 pm
  44. Christmas is a myth perpetuated by the Zionist media.

    (Irving Berlin was a you-know-who…)


    Posted by Akbar Palace | December 20, 2012, 5:12 pm
  45. obviously

    Posted by 3issa | December 21, 2012, 3:08 am
  46. Threesa,

    Don’t forget 9-11.

    Posted by Akbar Palace | December 21, 2012, 8:38 am
  47. and AIDS too

    Posted by 3issa | December 21, 2012, 9:51 am
  48. obviously

    Posted by Akbar Palace | December 21, 2012, 10:47 am
  49. AP<

    Leave Christmas alone dude. Wishing y'all a Merry Christmas & a Safe & Healthy New Year. Still hoping that we might have a white Christmas.

    Posted by danny | December 21, 2012, 12:25 pm
  50. A Palace is stil bummed about the no presents from Santa thing. Jealous of Xmas.

    O” Hark Ye One and All! Mark the passing of the winter solstice in which ever way is germane.

    Here comes the sun again.

    Posted by lally | December 21, 2012, 9:37 pm
  51. Myths vs. Miffs


    Who is “Santa”?

    Sarcasm aside, I like Christians. If it weren’t for Christians, there wouldn’t be a Jewish homeland.

    So I say, “Merry Christmas!” to everyone here of the Christian faith.

    And just a reminder, unfortunately, the ME hasn’t been very friendly to Christians. According to the link below, the Christian population of the ME has dwindled from 20% to 5% over the past 100 years. The Christian and Muslim population in Israel has been increasing…


    Posted by Akbar Palace | December 22, 2012, 3:39 pm
  52. that is so nice of you AP, you are a role model to me

    Posted by 3issa | December 23, 2012, 8:53 am
  53. Role Model Mania

    Really? What made you give up on the respected Hassan, Bashar, Mahmoud trio?

    Posted by Akbar Palace | December 23, 2012, 1:32 pm
  54. you

    Posted by 3issa | December 24, 2012, 8:56 am
  55. Threesa,

    Shukran. My next goal is to get you to purchase Israel bonds. It’s a good investment and a good cause. We want to keep Israel a safe haven and a land of freefom and opportunity for all het citizens.

    Check out:


    Posted by Akbar Palace | December 24, 2012, 8:05 pm
  56. Especially for the Palestinians and the African migrants

    Posted by 3issa | December 25, 2012, 7:15 am
  57. QN’s new Health Care Service up and running


    Since when are “African migrants” citizens? I know Israel does a better job than your Arab heroes do, but does Israel really have to go beyond the exemplary and now save the whole world?

    Israeli-Arabs can consider themselves Palestinians if they want to, nevertheless, they are already considered citizens and have full rights. This is why I think they have NOT demonstrated in Israel like they have in Egypt, Syria, Yemen, Morroco, and Bahrain, even when they are free to demonstrate!

    Methinks you still suffer double-standard issues. We can work on that in 2013. QN may want to consider not only a “Arab-Israeli” page, but also an “Anti-Israel Therapy” page as well. No copays, no insurance necessary, the cost would be completely subsidized by the QN website.

    Login here:


    Posted by Akbar Palace | December 26, 2012, 8:03 am
  58. Thank you

    Posted by 3issa | December 26, 2012, 7:42 pm
  59. Let’s pray for 2013 to be the year witnessing the downfall of the Israeli regime and the Zionist institutions occupying Palestine. Let’s pray that all faiths and ethnicity will be able to live together under one single democratic state in the Holy Land. But most importantly, let’s pray for the demise of all the dictatorships in the Arab world and beyond, with a specific mention for those who manipulates the Palestinian sufferings for their own survival interests.


    Posted by 3issa | December 29, 2012, 6:11 pm
  60. Threesa,

    Half your prayers have answered, since all faiths and ethnicities ARE living together under one democratic state in the Holy Land. You must not get out much.

    Good luck with the other “more important” prayer: the demisr of the Arab dictatorships”. I’ll pray with you.

    On a related note, some deputy from the Egyptian MB is calling for all Egyptian jews to return to Egypt. My question to the forum; is this guy psychotic?

    Posted by Akbar Palace | December 29, 2012, 8:30 pm
  61. Ob Ob Obba Saida Style

    Posted by Vulcan | January 8, 2013, 6:18 pm
  62. I was hoping 2013 would wipe out any reference to Gangnam style and bury it for good.

    Posted by Maverick | January 8, 2013, 6:31 pm
  63. lol ..sorry, couldnt resist i am in the middle of the storm

    Posted by Vulcan | January 8, 2013, 6:34 pm
  64. Ana bi janet Alla 3ala el Ard. Ana 3end Arz el rab..ibtasem ana fi lebnein… ya msha7ar hal 7aky.. el 7akika wel 7a2e2o wel Ho2… yen3anrobok

    ya dely ana…web3atly kalam, web3atly kalam wetaminy

    kolama etasa3at al ro2ya thaqa al nafasoo, wan3asara al qalboo. Qifa Nabki min thikra watani

    Posted by Vulcan | January 9, 2013, 7:19 am
  65. Times are Tough in Occupied Palestine

    One-quarter of Yiddish students at Bar-Ilan University are Arab.


    Posted by Akbar Palace | January 10, 2013, 12:33 pm
  66. cute

    Posted by 3issa | January 11, 2013, 2:01 pm
  67. Threesa,

    I understand your concern for the Palestinians, but what is the Arab-world doing to help the Syrians, who are suffering much more than the Palestinians?

    Posted by Akbar Palace | January 14, 2013, 8:15 am
  68. none of your business, you non-hebrew-speaking-american!

    Posted by 3issa | January 14, 2013, 1:15 pm
  69. Business as Usual


    What is your nationality? Are you Palestinian? Whether you are Palestinian or not doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be concerned with the plight of the Palestinians.

    Likewise, as a Jewish-American, I am concerned with peace and the plight of the Israelis.

    I always find it odd that arabs tend to put the plight of the Palestinians on a level way over and above the plight of other arabs, as if being Palestinian is “super-human” or “holy”. What about other arabs? Why are they not afforded the same status?

    I sometimes think this has something to do with Israel, but I can’t put my finger on it.

    And, BTW, I speak hebrew. I would like speak arabic and french if you know any good instructors…

    Posted by Akbar Palace | January 14, 2013, 1:27 pm
  70. http://www.naharnet.com/stories/en/68275-gemayel-says-marginalizing-christians-no-longer-acceptable-urges-march-14-to-propose-alternatives

    Gemayel and Aoun agreeing in principle with each other, I am not a political scientist but I believe the events in Syria are making Christians in Lebanon uncomfortable, and hence the similar stances against the 1960 law. It will be interesting to see how this plays out

    Posted by tamer k | January 14, 2013, 1:34 pm

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