Here I go again. But the reverberations of Bush's and Abbas' words have just been felt in Lebanon. Here are two items that should help explain the growing desperation of the antidemocratic forces. But just as the North Koreans angered China, the Syrians/Iranians angered Paris. See, Chirac urges international probe into Hariri death
In other words, US is receiving support on both fronts. Moreover, a desperate Schroeder overstepped. He, and other, misattributed his last victory to anti-Americanism (instead of Stoiber's stupid failure to promise help to the flood victims) and he is trying to repeat the trick. I do not believe he will be able answering masking his failure not only to lower unemployment but"achieving" a record one. In other words, we are continuing to win, but it is costly. The bad guys refuse to go quietly into the night. Harriri's death is a major loss not only to his family, but his death will not derail the train but galvanize its supporters.
Hariri Supporters Pour onto the Streets reports the Anadolu News Agency (aa)
Former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri's assassination in a blast earlier today has enraged the world and his supporters have taken to the streets. A little known group meanwhile has claimed the responsibility of the attack.
An Al-Jazeera television broadcast reported that a person had called their office in Beirut following the assassination; however, he did not give the name of the group responsible.
Hizbullah Lifts Pay for Sucide Attacks to $100,000 If that is not a sign of desperation, I do not know what is.
The Lebanon-based Hizbullah terror organization has announced that it is raising the compensation it pays out to families of suicide attackers from $20,000 to $100,000.
Bank transfers and e-mail intercepted from the organization by they PA reveal this new development, reports Arutz-7's Haggai Huberman.
Senior officials of PA armed forces claim that Hizbullah presents the number one threat to the ceasefire currently in effect. The Lebanese group is attempting to enlist terrorists from the Fatah organization, the main governing party in the PA, and from Fatah offshoots such as the Al Aksa Brigades. The latter is closely aligned with PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas, and is responsible for the murder of hundreds of Jews since the outbreak of the Oslo War in September 2000.
Israeli officials, too, report that there are currently some 50 Hizbullah-sponsored terrorist cells throughout Judea and Samaria.
PA military officials told Associated Press reporters that Hizbullah, which has in the past funded hundreds of PA terrorists, has been intensifying its recruiting efforts, offering to pay great sums of money to armed men willing to attack Israeli targets.
One PA terrorist - he told the AP that he is a"former" terrorist - disclosed how a Hizbullah operative contacted him a day before the Sharm a-Sheikh summit and offered him a substantial sum of money in exchange for carrying out violent acts. According to this source, groups of 5-6 Hezbolla recruits are paid from $5,000 - $8,000 for weapons, ammunition, and ongoing terror activities. Payment includes free use of a cellular phone.
A PA military officer charged with supervising “radical” groups has pointed out that Hizbullah attempts to find out the bank account numbers of its operatives in the PA, as well as the names of terrorist perpetrators, by way of e-mail exchanges. The officer claims that he has read some of these exchanges and that the “humanitarian” bureau within the PA “supervises” the bank transfer of money from the Hizbullah to terrorists within the PA. The officer also claims that he has notified the PA leadership of the Hizbullah activity, but has not received any instructions to intervene to preclude such operations or arrest terrorists.
Huberman points out that the Hizbullah revelations result from a “media offensive” that the PA has initiated over the past few days. The PA wishes to expose the methods used by Hizbullah to recruit Arab terrorists. The PA leadership hopes that this will defuse the pressure on PA leader Abbas (Abu Mazen), who claims that the PA is trying to stop violent acts against Israel and engage in negotiations.
Hizbullah terrorist chieftain Hassan Nasrallah declared last week that violent opposition to Israel will continue and will not stop under any circumstances. He was quoted by Al-manar television on February 9th as saying, “This is the year of unrelenting opposition, preserving the opposition and standing firm in opposition, which is our choice, our way and faith, and a pan-Arab, Islamic national struggle.”
DEBKA-Net-Weekly’s Middle East sources report that the move was initiated this week by former prime minister Rafiq Hariri, Druze leader Walid Jumblatt and the Christian Maronite archbishop Nasrallah Sfeir, acting on a signal from Washington.
The demand for Lebanon’s divorce from Syria for the purpose of making peace with Israel is the direct consequence of the January 29 UN Security Council resolution drafted by France and adopted by all 15 Council members, which ruled that the controversial Shabaa Farms along Israel’s northern border was part of Syrian Golan prior to the 1967 War - not Lebanon.
That resolution was supported by Washington to knock the stuffing out of the Shiite terrorist group Hizballah’s main justification for attacking Israel and to free Lebanese leaders to start talks with Israel. With that issue out of the way, the Lebanese trio maintained that Beirut has no further territorial or border quarrel with Israel and had nothing to do with the Syrian-Israel dispute or the Golan issue. There was no bar therefore to the two neighbors establishing normal peace and economic relations.
This action was meant to supplement the February 8 Israel-Palestinian ceasefire accord in Sharm el-Sheikh and deflect some of the popular ire directed against Israeli prime minister Ariel Sharon over his evacuation plan. Above all, the Assad regime and the Hizballah would have found themselves isolated in a corner. For the rest, Syrian Military Intelligence Eliminates Hariri and Reform Hopes for Lebanon.