Crossfire War – TEHRAN – DAMASCUS – BEIRUT WATCH – West Asia Theatre: Tehran – Damascus – Riyadh – Beirut – Nahr al-Bared/Paris – Rome – Jerusalem – Cairo; Islamic Militants Fire on Lebanon Army Patrol from Deserted Building Outside Nahr al-Bared
Night Watch: DESERTED BUILDING – Though Tehran-Damascus have now removed Lebanon Prime Minister Fouad Siniora from any major decision making role, and have allowed him to proclaim victory after the fighting finally ended at Nahr al-Bared after more than three months, Iran-Syria have decided to keep Lebanon’s military of divided loyalties busy. Xinhua reports, according to reliable sources, unidentified Islamic gunmen have opened fire on a Lebanese army patrol from a deserted building outside Nahr al-Bared, which is just 8 miles north of Tripoli near the Syrian border. It was reported yesterday that although the fighting at the Palestinian camp-city had ended some of the members of the suicide unit Fatah al-Islam, perhaps as many as ten, had managed to escape. It was also reported when the war began May 20 other Islamic fighters from different extremist groups had entered the area though most did not join the fighting at Nahr al-Bared. [XINHUA]
Analysts and reports have stated since the fighting began war could erupt all over Lebanon in a variety of ways, a smaller version of Iraq and not much different from the fifteen year civil war from 1975-90 begun by a group connected to France-Maronite Catholics. With Tehran’s expertise of creating chaos it is quite possible Iran is now having the war spread and in this case to prevent any chance of the part of Lebanon’s military willing to work with the European forces in UNIFIL in the country’s south on the Lebanon/Israel border. I suspect what Tehran has in mind now is to have Hezbollah begin the next war with Israel forcing Jerusalem to respond massively and that will cause serious alarm in the European capitals that have committed troops to UNIFIL.
Not only will more fighting continue to create strategic chaos by dividing Lebanon, enabling Syria to invade in the name of restoring stability, but also war in the south will divide the Allies, which were never united to begin with. The European units in UNIFIL hate Israel and were hoping to sit in the south and watch just Hezbollah/Israel fight each other, but Tehran-Damascus want no military presence by the West anywhere in the region. The chaos will trap UNIFIL a smaller version of the UK/US trap in Iraq. As the European units began to arrive because of the Rome Conference last summer, Tehran had al-Qaeda units declare them an enemy of Islam.