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The Asylum

Welcome to the Asylum. This is a site devoted to politics and current events in America, and around the globe. The THREE lunatics posting here are unabashed conservatives that go after the liberal lies and deceit prevalent in the debate of the day. We'd like to add that the views expressed here do not reflect the views of other inmates, nor were any inmates harmed in the creation of this site.

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Friday, December 01, 2006

On The Cusp Of Collapse: Hezbollah Lays Siege To Lebanese Government Building

Allah @ Hot-Air presents this breaking story. And like he, I did not take much notice of the protests this morning in Lebanon. That is to say, I did not think much of them in terms of a threat. But according to Abu Kais, blogging at Michael Totten's site, the situation is not as was initially reported. (And I apologize for not having the link, but it appears to be dead at Hot-Air.)

Update. The Hizbullah militia has laid siege to the government building, trapping the prime minister and cabinet ministers inside. Roadblocks were set up by Hizbullah members in what can only be described as coup d’etat.

The Lebanese army had to call Nabih Berri, and the Saudi King had to intervene through his ambassador, to “partially” remove the siege. Hizbullah “tents” are still on the roads, isolating the government building.

The Saudi king phoned the cabinet and spoke to all ministers one by one, affirming his support. The only countries NOT supporting this government are Syria and Iran.

Meanwhile, over at the Counterterrorism Blog Walid Phares spells out a few things for those needing a clue:

HizbAllah has mobilized all its membership as well as all persons on payrolls of the organization and in the various bureaucracies controlled by the pro-Iranian militia. In addition, the entire pro-Syrian movements in the country such as the Baath, National-Socialist Syrian Party, and politicians such as Michel Aoun, Omar Karame, Sleiman Frangieh and others. Added to this list, pro-Syrian and Jihadi elements from the Palestinian camps in Lebanon. And since the Lebanese-Syrian borders haven't been sealed by a multinational force, loads of buses carrying members of the Syrian Baath, have been crossing the international frontier to join the anti-Government rally. The total number of the participants would be calculated as equivalent to the pro-Syrian March 8, 2005 demonstrated led by HizbAllah then plus an undetermined number of Palestinian and Syrian elements. And since General Aoun shifted from the Cedars Revolution to an open alliance with HizbAllah few months ago, a number of his hard-core followers are expected to join the crowd.

The political objectives of the "offensive" is to paralyze the Fuad Seniora Government from performing the following tasks: One, is to block the passing of the international tribunal (in the Hariri assassination) law in the Lebanese Parliament in the next two weeks. The Syrian-Iaranian strategy is to block the meetings of the Lebanese cabinet and the Lebanese legislative assembly for as long as needed to crumble this bill. Two, is to force the Seniora cabinet to resign or to accept the inclusion of pro-Syrian ministers so that any decision to disarm HizbAllah would be killed inside the Government. Three, is to crumble the UNSCR 1559 and the relations between Lebanon and the United Nations in general and the US and France in particular. In short a return of the Syrian-Iranian domination in Lebanon.

The longer aim of these movements however is to perform a penetration by HizbAllah and other pro-Syrian forces inside the areas under the control of the Lebanese government. According to inside sources, between five to ten thousand HizbAllah fighters have been mobilized to “organize the security of the demonstrators.” This means that the equivalent of one pro-Iranian division will be entering Beirut from the southern suburb and deploying in downtown and in areas adjacent to the strategic Damascus road. In addition elements from the radical SSNP (the Greater Syria Nazi movement), who are believed to have been behind a number of political assassinations, as well as hundreds of Syrian special forces camouflaged as supporters of HizbAllah are already inside the city. According to security in Lebanon, all roads leading into Beirut with the exception of the north will be under the control of these “forces.” The regular Lebanese Army has received orders by its commander to deploy between the “demonstrators” and the official buildings. While the “core” of the Army follows the institution significant numbers of troops and many officers are either HizbAllah members or follow its instructions. Hence, according to Lebanese Army officers (names not to be disclosed) “when and if the time will come, no one will really know how many will join the Iranian-Syrian axis against the Government.”

This does not bode well for those in Lebanon. I would urge any United States citizen there right now to leave immediately. Hezbollah, and Assad's forces coming in from Syria are bound and determined to take down the Lebanese government using any and all means necessary. And in the end, we know that they will resort to violence.

This is the big push. Assad is pulling out all the stops to bring Lebanon back under his control, and by proxy, under Iranian control. And I might add that if the Lebanese military has been recalled from the south to protect Beirut, and the government buildings that are being isolated, then who is down south keeping an eye on Hezbollah? Are we expecting the United Nations force down there to stop Hezbollah should they decide to ratchet up their continuing attacks on Israel? I would not recommend holding your breath on that issue.

If something is not done soon, this government will fall. And I find it most disingenuous of the media, as noted by Christopher Hitchens that the Lebanese government is "backed" by anyone in the West:

If this indeed proves to be the outcome, the victors will be able to rub their eyes at how easy it was. Barely five years after the eviction of the Taliban, three and a half years after the fall of Saddam Hussein, and a year and a half after the Syrian army was forced out of Beirut by a show of mass popular and democratic unity, the memory of those brave fingers marked with the purple ink of the franchise has almost vanished. Tribalism and gangsterism are back, in a big way, with heavy state support from across the frontiers. And the United States, it seems, cannot wait to confirm the impression that it would rather deal with the aggressors. If the latest assassination in Lebanon caused any embarrassment to the enthusiasm of the Baker-Hamilton team for direct talks with Damascus and Tehran, the embarrassment wasn't evident. The Lebanese Cabinet may have bravely voted last week, in spite of a campaign of blackmail by Syria's death squads and religious proxies, to establish a tribunal to investigate the murder of Rafik Hariri, but in Washington, the talk is of getting on better terms with the people who, on all the available evidence, blew up his car. You may have noticed the new habit in the media of referring to the government of Lebanon as "American-backed" or "Western-backed." This is as if to imply that it is not an expression of Lebanon's remaining autonomy. But it is also cruelly ironic: Where exactly is this "backing"? Once again, it is becoming more dangerous to be a friend of the United States than an enemy.

We do not back them, but we are a friend and an ally to them. And we are watching the government fall. Mr. Hitchens is quite correct in pointing out that we now, all of a sudden, have decided to take the path of least resistance, and "talk" things over with our enemies. That is not the sort of sign that needs to be displayed for the world. And if I were the Lebanese, I would be worried right now, and doing anything I could to get out.



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