Crossfire War – TEHRAN WATCH – West Asia Theatre: Tehran – Beirut – Paris – Damascus/Jerusalem; French – UN Tank Unit Interferes with Israel Armor Unit Investigating Hezbollah Raid – Merwahin – Lebanon – Half – Hour Standoff
Night Watch: MERWAHIN – Though Jerusalem denies the incident Debka reports it was witnessed by American and German journalists. That on Thursday, September 28, four French Leclerc tanks, painted UN white, blocked the path of five Israeli Merkava tanks as they attempted to search the Lebanese village of Merwahin where the Hezbollah unit that raided an Israeli arms store in Kibbutz Shomera was based. The standoff lasted a half-hour and at times the distance between the opposing units was only 50 yards (meters). The French unit broke off contact first though the French commander said it was Israel tanks that left first. [DEBKA]
This was the second time the French seemed to have shown support for Beirut-Hezbollah-Tehran. French fighter jets were seen flying over Sheik Hassan Nasrallah’s victory speech on the 22nd. I suspect Paris is desperate to give the impression, to Tehran, that France can be relied upon as a partner in the region. Observing this obsequiousness is of course Tehran and I think they realize it has been brought on by fear. The fear, rampant throughout any Western government, of the consequences of opposing Tehran. Paris is protecting those who hate them.
The French and the West are desperately clinging to the illusion that if they cooperate with Iran then war can somehow be avoided. Maybe this is some kind of charm offensive that is usually most evident during these circuitous nuclear negotiations. That will hardly impress Iran’s Defense Ministry or its Revolutionary Guards. Perhaps Paris wasn’t listening when Tehran said, through al-Qaeda, that the UNIFIL forces, which are largely European, are an enemy of Islam – Iran. During the next wave of fighting, which can break out any moment, UNIFIL will be targeted more than Israel. Tehran, and other Islamic capitals, do not wish to see Europe occupying Lebanon as the US/UK have been occupying Iraq.