Men so proud of their warrior status, so full of the honour of representing Allah, in their Islamist jihad against moderate Muslims. Moderates, people looking to the future, to placing themselves, within Islam, in a context of acceptance and inclusion and forward-seeking advancement within the community of communities that is this world that all of its disparate countries inhabit.
These brave challengers of those willing to live in peaceful co-existence with others are so proud of their status as Islamist warriors that they adopt a uniform geared to promote fear.
They present themselves, well armed and ready for combat, so courageous that they hide their facial features behind masks, revealing only the hostility of avenging, hate-filled orbs, eyes revealing their agenda of jihadist nihilism.
Hezbollah, the army of god, their god, the god that exudes ill will and condemnation of any who cannot find it in their religious or secular landscape to accept the challenge and the power and the deep satisfaction of blood-letting carnage. All generations somehow manage to produce their quota of brutish young men engaged in fixed ideas of force and the brutal efficiency of fear and terror.
It is now the shame of Islam, the state of mind of Islamic values that recognizes the human need of compassion and fairness and just relationships to one another, to be held in ransom by a self-styled army of god, a fascist terror group. The Ayatollahs of Iran are content to manipulate the endless stream of self-absorbed andpsychotically-inclined men who style themselves defenders of the faith.
The dream of a resurgent and even more powerful and widespread caliphate under Iranian Shi'ite rule with the imposition of Sharia Law taking the place of liberal democracies abroad once it has successfully obliterated the incorrect rule of Sunni sultanates, kingdoms and dictatorships, leads Iran's agenda. The legitimate government of Lebanon hardly knows how to react to its loss of face in having to climb down from its initial decision todeclaw an insubordinate Hezbollah.
Hezbollah, the creature of Iran and Syria, will not be subordinate to any other dictates than that which currently satisfy its needs. All this, from permitting Palestinian refugees and their militias, thrown out of Jordan, to settle in southern Lebanon. Lebanon doing a slow disappearing act; the Lebanon of grace and beauty, the holiday destination for the Middle East, with its lush landscape, and cohabiting Sunni, Shia, Christian, Druze. Pride makes way for a heavy fall.
Ancient and bitter sectarianism, aided by renascent Bedouin parochialism and the introduction of Palestinian grievances tipped the balance into civil war, occupation, and ongoing conflict. Interspersed with quiescence, occupation, resentment, and restive attempts at independence from the thrall of Syrian occupation, Iranian decision-making. How humiliating for Lebanese patriots. They denounced, they resisted, they paid with their lives.
Lebanon, poor country that it is, pride smashed, civility in disarray, dissent and dissatisfaction the order of the day, has been utterly humiliated. The country's proxy position as a scapegoat between American and Iranian interests and Arab support, makes it the ultimate victim. Yet it is toward Israel that it points the finger of accusation - the evil manipulator of its lost national fortune.
When and if regime change does occur finally in that poor lost country, circumstances will tip once again, with a string of Iran-supporting countries; Iraq, Syria, Qatar and Lebanon, facing off against the remaining Sunni-majority Middle East. Extremely nervous-making. Should the current government resign, Hezbollah and its allyAmal will have free rein to complete their violence against the Druze and Christian and Sunni militias. The Lebanese army somewhere in between, impotent.
Walid Jumblatt tells the Al-Quds Al-Arabi that the power balance in the Middle East is trembling on the edge of uncertain determination: "Now we are waiting for Hezbollah, Iran and Syria to determine the rules of the game."
The Arab League hardly knows how to respond - other than to term the current destabilization in Lebanon a "domestic issue". They've succumbed to threats. An inter-Arab committee will be launched to hold talks with "all sides in Lebanon". Seems as though Saudi Arabia and Egypt have been backed into an unfortunate, worrying corner.
The Saudis lament that the legitimate Lebanese government cannot be abandoned to Iran and Syria: "We must do everything in our power to end this war and to save Lebanon..." They worry about the very real potential of "Iranian expansion in Arab countries, which are evident in Yemen, Iraq, and Lebanon".
Photographs released by several news agencies showing Amal and Hezbollah militias setting fire to posters of murdered patriot Rafiq Al-Hariri, and replacing them with posters of Syrian president, Bashar Al-Assad tell quite the story.
An editorial reporting on the Arab foreign ministers' meeting criticized "the cowardly Arabs", incapable of determining a united stand between the axis of the radical countries and the bloc of moderate countries. "How long will these countries fear? Now that Beirut has fallen into the hands of Iran, andFouad Al-Siniora's government is under siege, the Arabs have no choice but to confront Iran because they had better know that that which they fear today will happen tomorrow".
The writing is on the wall, but no one seems capable of deciphering it. Instead, that tired old fall-back position of blaming Israel for all the internecine battles in the Arab countries and between the Arab countries and Iran give them all the denials, the needed excuses they seek in place of responsible decision-making. Real diplomacy, true consensus-building, effort-laden missions of responsible action seem beyond them. They resort to what they know best.
The efficacy of blaming outside influences, the baleful, Islam-hating outside world.
Labels: Crisis Politics, Middle East, Terrorism, Traditions