Crossfire War – Beirut – Demonstrations in Martyrs Square – Wars After Funeral

Crossfire War – TEHRAN WATCH – West Asia Theatre: Tehran – Beirut – Damascus/Paris – Rome – London – Washington – Jerusalem – Cairo; “The War Clouds that Hang Over Lebanon” – Amir Taheri – Asharq al-Awsat – Demonstration in Martyrs Square – After the Funeral – War – Tehran Increases its Control Over Region – Lost Alliance US/UK – UNIFIL Entrapped

Night Watch: BEIRUT – Amir Taheri, Iranian exile, author of the definitive work on the Ayatollah Khomeini and Iran’s Islamic Revolution-The Spirit of Allah, is a former editor of one of Tehran’s leading newspapers. He is now a senior journalist of the pan-Arab daily Asharq al-Awsat, based in London and has written an extremely excellent and thorough article discussing why the historical religious divisions in Lebanon has always caused them to be subject to destabilizing outside influences from the region and beyond. [ASHARQALAWSAT]

His current article, “The War Clouds that Hang Over Lebanon” mentions the new unnatural alliance between so-called Christian General Michel Aoun and Hezbollah leader Sheik Hassan Nasrallah as just the latest example of brief political alliances that have no chance of providing genuine stability but can be reckless enough to plunge Lebanon into another war. Taheri also mentions that Tehran has been in the process of preparing Lebanon as another front to engage Washington as they have used Iraq and Afghanistan. He quotes Iran’s Defense Minister Muhammad Pour-Najjar as describing the Lebanon branch of Hezbollah as, “The most powerful Arab army today.”

Editor: General Aoun is obviously an extension of the West’s obsession to conquer Jerusalem once again and represents maniacal established interests in the West, which reacts and schemes with its foreign policy regarding West Asia, along those demented psychological lines and in the name of Christianity. The assassinated Industry Minister Pierre Gemayel, a leading figure in the Phalange Party was part of the same branch of ritual but was opposed to Damascus and Tehran’s influence in the country. But Tehran, through Sheik Hassan Nasrallah, Hezbollah’s leader has conveniently permitted the alliance with Aoun to provide Hezbollah the appearance of being broader based and not just representing the Shi’ite community. This alliance will end when Tehran has al-Qaeda and other Islamic units attack the European led UNIFIL forces in Lebanon.

This is just a microcosm of the myriad divisions which have caused Lebanon’s civil wars that become an open invitation for powerful governments, in and out of the region, to manipulate. It was admitted during the 15 year civil war, 1975-90, that there were 16 different groups fighting for control. They would ally themselves one day then fight each other the next. Within the three major political – religious groups: Sunni, Shi’te, Maronite Catholic, there are sub-divisions, which, according to Taheri are frantically rearming. AP reports that in Martyrs Square there was an enormous rally of 800,000 in support of the murdered Pierre Gemayel, the sixth anti-Syrian, anti-Iranian figure murdered in Lebanon in the past two years.[ASHARQALAWSAT]

Damascus is of course taking the blame from most capitals in the region and the West, but not Paris, which is accurately accusing Tehran of being behind it. There is an old truism that helps guides investigators concerning powerful crimes, if you want to know who is behind it, and then ask, who did the crime profit? No one has profited more than Tehran from these assassinations. They have strengthened the hold Damascus-Tehran has over not only Lebanon but also on events, wars in the region. Lebanon’s former Prime Minister Rafik al-Hariri was killed, February 2005, just two weeks after mentioned Lebanon’s Defense Minister visited Tehran.

With rival demonstrations taking place an atmosphere of chaos has descended over the country once again. Supporters of Gemayel are demanding revenge against Syria President Bashar al-Assad, General Michel Aoun for uniting with Hezbollah and Damascus-Tehran’s ally President Emile Lahoud. Hezbollah supporters have blocked roads and burnt tires leading to Beirut airport and also demonstrated in the Beirut suburbs of Zokak al-Blat and Mar Elias. The tires were removed by the army and in what must have been a strange moment for him Nasrallah called for calm and demanded the demonstrations cease. In a televised interview he stated, “The situation is very sensitive and critical. There are many who do not wish well for the country.”

One of the many are his sponsors Damascus-Tehran who are causing this next wave of war around Jerusalem but whose main target is not Israel but Europe, through the Balkans, UNIFIL and the reluctant, embarrassing President of Egypt Hosni Mubarak. Popular support in Egypt for the war against the West and Israel will be Tehran’s vehicle of having Mubarak removed since he is the proud obstacle to Islamic unity. The lost alliance of London-Washington will of course be kept busy chasing the Jihad around Iraq as they continue to find reasons to avoid war with Iran.

Nasrallah may fear the chaos could also destroy him and Hezbollah and if that happens then Tehran will celebrate their martyrdom. Iran did not establish them for the purpose of peace and stability, quite the opposite. Perhaps Nasrallah has forgotten. He does have the potential now to become head of state but in what condition will Lebanon be, perhaps mostly a nation of returning refugees.

This latest war could leave quite a bit of Lebanon in ashes, even more so than the previous fifteen year civil war. Taheri pointed out that during that conflict both the West and Soviet Union stayed on the sidelines and showed very little interest in getting involved. What Taheri and a lot of the Islamic world may not realize, is that neither the West nor Russia, which is financed by the West, have ever wanted to see a powerful Islamic country. Moscow and Western capitals love to watch wars in West Asia (Middle East) because it weakens the region and makes it easier to manipulate.

But with the Persian mentality of intelligent evil and its expert use of availability, entering the conflict during the 1980’s as a result of the Khomeini revolution, Tehran has now caused the conflict to entrap the West, UNIFIL and the lost alliance. Only Moscow has avoided the deluded policy the West is so proud of in committing forces to the region, so first the lost alliance and now UNIFIL blindly and proudly marched right into it. And with the range of Iran’s ballistic missiles, armed with nuclear warheads, the areas north of the Mediterranean will be inflamed perhaps even more than Beirut and Baghdad. Tehran could however, if feeling diplomatic, apologize for the collateral damage.

The Western backed government of Lebanon Prime Minister Fuad Saniora is on the verge of collapse with Tehran filling the vacuum through Hezbollah, who like al-Qaeda is just one of Iran’s instruments of chaos.

Willard Payne is an international affairs analyst who specializes in International Relations. A graduate of Western Illinois University with a concentration in East-West Trade and East-West Industrial Cooperation, he has been providing incisive analysis to NewsBlaze. He is the author of Imagery: The Day Before.