Ahmadinejad’s Deadly Triumph in Lebanon

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It would have been unthinkable just a couple of years ago: Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was welcomed in Lebanon on Wednesday for a visit that demonstrated just how far the Lebanese democracy has fallen and how fast the enemies of freedom have risen.

Ever since the Doha Agreement of 2008, in which Hezbollah achieved with guns what it couldn’t achieve with the ballot box, the arc of power and influence of the democratic “March 14th Alliance” has been waning. In Qatar, the Western-friendly coalition made up largely of Sunnis, Christians, and Druze reluctantly agreed to give the Hezbollah-led opposition enough cabinet ministers in government to give them veto power over the majority’s policies. In effect, the hard-won election of 2005 that had given the democrats nominal control was canceled, and the wolf was invited inside where he then proceeded to make himself at home.

Even the parliamentary elections last year that saw another victory by the March 14th coalition was eventually watered down as the “Spirit of Doha” and once again brought the Hezbollah opposition into a government partnership. The political motto of Lebanon — “No victors, no vanquished” — rings hollow today as Hezbollah has bullied and threatened its way to dominance.

There is no doubt that Hezbollah has reached the zenith of its power and influence in Lebanon. By demonstrating a willingness to press its advantages, as well as hold the specter of violence over the heads of the March 14th Alliance, the government now marches to the beat of Hezbollah’s drums. There is something pathetic in all of this if one considers the high hopes of the Lebanese people when the March 14th Alliance first took power in 2005. Since that time, compromise after compromise with the enemies of freedom have sapped the will to resist the constant pressure of Hezbollah and its Iranian masters. In the end, most of the leaders of the March 14th forces have either resigned to the inevitable or are maintaining a lower profile.

This is the backdrop of Ahmadinejad’s triumphal visit to Lebanon. With a newly confident and assertive Syria, and Lebanon’s Hezbollah in de facto control of the country, the minions of the Iranian president now present a united front against Israel and Western interests in the Levant.

Efraim Inbar, director of the Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies in Tel Aviv, summed up the significance of Ahmadinejad’s visit:

The important issue is that we see another step in the ‘Hezbollah-ization’ of Lebanon…Lebanon is further losing its independence and Hezbollah is taking over, with Ahmadinejad encouraging these forces and signaling to the whole Middle East that Lebanon is becoming an Iranian protectorate.

Buttressing the idea that Lebanon has become a virtual client state of Iran were remarks made by Ahmadinejad during the frenetic rally held in southern Lebanon in Bint Jbeil. Hezbollah has made that little town a “symbol of the resistance,” promoting the legend of Hezbollah’s victory during the 2006 war with Israel.

During his speech, Ahmadinejad jumped feet first into the crisis currently roiling politics in Lebanon; the so-called “false witnesses” issue relating to the UN’s Special Tribunal for Lebanon (STL). In a nutshell, the UN has been investigating the assassination in 2005 of Rafiq Hariri, former prime minister and father of current PM Said Hariri. The first report on the investigation issued in 2005 by then-prosecutor Detlev Mehlis, implicated high-level Syrian officials in the murders, including President Assad’s brother in law.

But over the years, some witnesses have recanted (they were clearly intimidated), others murdered, and the UN walked back from its initial findings of Syrian involvement. Also, four prominent Lebanese generals who had been jailed until last year, were released because of questionable eyewitness testimony. It is impossible to say at this point how much pressure was placed on key witnesses to change their testimony and whether there really were “false witnesses” in the case.

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  • Triple_AAA

    I would have loved to have seen an Israeli sniper take this lunatic out as he visited the Israel-Lebanon border.

  • kafir4life

    How can you not love the picture of the tiny imalittleteapot with the arabic YES WE CAN???

    Barry's emboldening his colleagues in islam.

  • SHmuelHaLevi

    It is a tragedy that we "appear" to be locked into paralysis both in Israel and the US.
    The creep was hardly a kilometer away from the border and could have been easily take out. We all will rue the day? Maybe not. Because….
    In the other hand, Iran's facilities connected to their nuclear armaments development and missile launching are being decimated. Somehow somebody is getting in there… tsk, tsk.
    I got the feeling that one of these days a little birdy will visit good ole Ahmed also.

  • Andres de Alamaya

    The sad part of it is that the majority of Lebanese are decent people and it is the minority that has hijacked them. It wouldn’t be difficult to flatten the entire country but one doesn’t want to kill innocents. Israel needs to target the leaders and as we have been doing in the Afghanistan-Pakistan border areas. They need to use drones to eliminate the Hezbollah leaders. Additionally, whenever Iran-funded rockets are fired at Israel from Gaza or Lebanon, it would be highly appropriate and justified for Israel to return the compliment by sending missiles to Tehran.

    • poetcomic1

      These good innocent people welcomed a terrorist mass murderer with an immense hero's welcome. A man who smashed a little baby girls skull as her father watched.
      An ecstatic nationwide welcome.

    • Spirit_Of_1683

      I don't recall anyone describing German and Japanese civilians as 'innocent civilians' during World War II. If missiles get fired at Israel from the Gaza Strip, West Bank or Southern Lebanon, that is an act of war and the civilians are culpable and guilty.

  • Beverley

    He is trying so hard to get something going. It is called stiring the pot. We have to hand it to Israel… what provocation.

  • http://www.myspace.com/freddawes1776/ Fred Dawes

    Israel will be here when God coming back, but the evil pig Ahmadinejad will be in hell with Hitler, Who killed million's of little white kids and millions of little people who did nothing but be alive at Hitler evil time that is what Ahmadinejad wants to do to Jews and You, understand one point this pig wants you dead,dead,dead. and if muslims go-along to get along that muslim will be in hell with Hitler and Ahmadinejad.

  • ObamaYoMoma

    It didn’t have to be that way and it wouldn’t be that way today if it weren’t for the gross incompetence of Condi “appeaser” Rice and GWB who together coerced Israel to accept the UN ceasefire settlement in the 2006 Second Lebanon War when they should have did everything in their power to encourage Israel to destroy Hezbollah utterly, which would have also handed Iran and Syria devastating defeats at the same time. In fact, it should have been a golden opportunity too good to pass up.

    Hence, we reaped what we sowed and as long as we keep electing unhinged loons, we can expect strategic blunders to keep occurring, and, of course, those responsible are never held to account. In fact, most Republicans still believe Condi “appeaser” Rice was a great Secretary of State. However, in my opinion she was one of the worse ever and GWB was the Jimmy Carter of the Republican Party, as even morons should have known beforehand that the UN would never stop Hezbollah from being rearmed by Iran and Syria. So thus the next war, which is inevitable, will make the 2006 Second Lebanese War look like a picnic in the park.

    The USA needs to elect a true conservative President who will make it one of his highest priorities to dismantle the Department of State because it has become a huge liability to the well being of the USA and to create a new Department of Foreign Service in its place and then ensure that it can never become co-opted by leftwing unhinged self-hating loons again.

    • stern

      Well said!

  • CAROLE63

    The people of Lebanon haven`t got much choice about welcoming Ahmadinejad, they know what will happen if they don`t, they are ruled by fear and bribery!

  • welldoneson

    The quisling "president" you Americans have put in the White House is directly responsible for this. Obama is an [expletive deleted] enigma.
    We know squat about this creep! Never has less information been available
    about a President's past. NOTHING about his is readily available, even during
    his time at American universities! Only the Dems could put such an America-hating,
    Marxist, hard-left backstabber in the White House. Fergawdsake, he's buddy-buddy with the bomb-thrower Ayers and other assorted lefty hate-filled lunatics. Words fail me…

  • Beverley

    Is Hizbullah trying to take over Lebanon with Iran's help? They have a common interest in escalating tensions in the Middle East.

    What other reason has that little 'Hitler' have for being there. Nothing good comes out of his heart and mouth.

  • Chezwick_Mac

    Just remember folks, our reversal in Lebanon didn't occur until 2009, when – in the early days of his Presidency – Obama effectively ended the previous Administration's policy of isolating both Syria and Iran. After he re-established effective relations with the former and sent diplomatic overtures to the latter, Obama put the anti-Syrian elements of the Lebanese government in an impossible position. Not wanting to be left high and dry, they all made their own peace with the Syrians, and the rest – as they say – is history.

    What did the USA get in exchange for its opening to Syria and its overtures to Iran? Absolutely nothing. Such is the on-the-job training of a starry-eyed political neophyte who has no clue how the real world – much less the Byzantine realm of the Middle-East – works.

    • ObamaYoMoma

      I understand a lot of conservatives desire to lay all the blame for Lebanon on Obama, but the reality is by the time Obama came into office, for all intents and purposes Lebanon had already been loss. The truth is GWB and Condi “appeaser” Rice both incompetently passed up a golden opportunity to destroy Hezbollah once and for all and to hand Iran and Syria a major strategic defeat, when they lobbied Israel to accept UNSCR 1701, which everyone and their brother predicted beforehand was going to be a farce even before it was signed, and indeed turned out to be a total farce as Iran and Syria both quickly rearmed Hezbollah with impunity, which then subsequently forced the Lebanese government to accept the Doha Agreement in May of 2008, which in effect gave Hezbollah veto power over the Lebanese government.

      However, I do agree that Obama relaxing tensions with Syria wasn’t exactly helpful either, but the fact of the matter is most of the damage had already been done by the time he took office, as both GWB and Condi “appeaser” Rice were both incredibly incompetent and leftwing in their own right with respect to Middle East foreign policy, which is one of the reasons why the Tea Party came into existence, in order to stop this leftwing hijacking of the Republican Party.

      • Chezwick_Mac

        I disagree. Bush had successfully isolated both Syria and its proxy – Hezbollah – in Lebanon. They weren't checkmated, but they were on the ropes….Sinora's government was firmly in our camp. Labanon was still up for grans, and then, Obama gave the enemy the reprieve they needed by establishing dialogue and rehabilitating their image, and there was a subsequent realignment of forces.

        • ObamaYoMoma

          Agree to disagree all you want, but had the Bush administration signaled Israel to destroy Hezbollah in 2006 instead of lobbying for Israel to sign UNSCR 1701, which everyone knew beforehand wasn’t worth the paper it was printed on and in which Iran and Syria started violating even before the ink was dry, there wouldn’t be a Hezbollah today and there wouldn’t have been a Doha Agreement signed in May 2008, which in effect gave Hezbollah veto power over the Lebanese government. Without either one of those two events, only made possible due to Bush and Condi “appeaser” Rice gross incompetence, Lebanon today would still be free.

          I don’t like leftists either, but I dislike them even more when they happen to be Republicans.

          • Chezwick_Mac

            Doha was indeed signed during Bush. Valid point.

  • iking

    and yet, the hypocrite mister ahmadinejad despises the US as the Great Satan because of imperialism but what he does in lebanon is quasi-imperialism by manipulating his idiotic war-mongering shiite puppets in the south.

  • Wesley69

    As the US and others of the international force pulled out, Syria, Hezbollah and revolutionary Iran began to get more involved in the politics of Lebanon, assassinating leaders who opposed them. After 1982, Israel invaded again in 2006, but it did nothing to reduce Syrian and more importantly Hezbollah's influence in Lebanon.

    Since then, Hezbollah is restocking with more rockets courtesy of Iran. They await the signal to attack. Should Israel attempt any action to destroy Iranian nuclear capabilities , the signal will be given and since Hezbollah sits on the border, Israel will suffer greatly. That would be pleasing to Ahmadinejad.

    All tyranny needs to gain a foothold is for people of good conscience to remain silent.
    Thomas Jefferson

  • http://carnagepro.com PenGun

    Hezbollah was created by the Israeli invasion of Lebanon in 1982. It exists to fight Israeli incursions into Lebanon.

    As it has achieved it;s purpose against Israel in 2006 it now is a pariah to the west. A big problem for those with plans for that part of the world.

  • Beverley

    Oh pleeze … Israel did not want Lebanon they went in to save the Israelies and Christians … hello!