Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Media Myths on the Current Lebanese Row

Do not believe most of what mainstream corporate media tell you about Lebanese affairs; their "coverage" is always relative to neocon-Likudnik foreign policy. In other words it's lies, omissions, and false history.

Myth One: The root of the recent conflict is sectarian in nature.

The myth is deflated when we find that the Hizballah-led opposition is joined not only by Amal (Shiite), but also by Michel Aoun's Free Patriotic Movement (FPM: secular/mostly Maronite Christian), the Syrian Social Nationalists Party (SSNP: secular/mostly Orthodox Christian), and non-partisan Christians and Sunnis everywhere—many of whom are also "anti-Syrian."

When Lebanese men, young and old, take up arms with Hizballah, it's not because they're a particular religious group or that they want to join Hizballahofficially: they do it because they oppose the policies of the current puppet-government, and because Hizballah is the only militia that has performed the duty of defending Lebanon against aggression from Israel—a state whose presence in Lebanon an overwhelming majority of Lebanese people detest and violently resist.

In this sense, and in the case of the opposition's broad-based support, we can see that the current row in Lebanon is the people vs. the state, and not Shiite vs. Christian vs. Sunni vs. Druze.

Note: Media and political figures complement their myth with references to the 1975–90 Lebanese Civil War to reinforce the notion that the Lebanese people should be perpetually separated into religious groups per imperial mandate. In a nutshell, this explains the "U.S.-backed" or "anti-Syrian" position—one that seeks to retain the "pro-Western" advantages inherent in the current arrangement. This is what the opposition opposes when pushing for a unity government, minority veto power, and so on.

Myth Two: Hizballah is the only militia not required to disarm since the civil war.

This is a ridiculous claim. The last paragraph in this Reuters report reads:

"The group was the only Lebanese faction allowed to keep its weapons after the civil war to fight Israeli forces occupying the south. Israel withdrew in 2000 and the fate of Hezbollah's weapons is at the heart of the political crisis."

Hizballah's weapons are at the top of the list of those who would, once again, like to see Israel have a free pass to raze Lebanon in pursuit of Hizballahand permanent Israeli and U.S. influence in Beirut. Practicalexamples are U.N. Resolutions 1559 and 1701; both of which call for the disarmament of militias in Lebanon—courtesy of Israel and the U.S. and their puppet Lebanese parties in Lebanon.

Mainstream media prove themselves wrong when reporting that pro-government forces are "laying down their arms" after squaring off with opposition forces led by Hizballah and Amal.

There are many "pro-government" militias in Lebanon—the Kataeb (Phalange) Party, the Progressive Socialist Party (PSP), the Future Movement (FM), et al.—and they seem to all be challenging the opposition's militias. So, who is funding and arming them? Or are they wielding toy guns and bottle rockets?

Note: Israel did not withdraw in 2000. Since their pseudo-withdrawal, Israeli overflights and border breeches are in the hundreds, and Israel still occupies small areas in South Lebanon. If not for Hizballah's keeping to the cease-fire in UNSCR 1701, those posts would eventually be Israeli-free as well, as also called for in 1701. In that sense, perhaps Hizballah's weapons are "at the heart" of the row (i.e., not because they are a danger to Lebanese interests).

Myth Three: Hizballah is carrying out a coup.

In the same, otherwise "fair and balanced" news report by Reuters, Iranian and Syrian backing of Hizballah is mentioned numerously to a fault (not an uncommon practice by major news agencies), as in the penultimate paragraph: "Hezbollah, backed by Iran and Syria, has led a 17-month-long political campaign against Prime Minister Fouad Siniora's anti-Syrian cabinet."

This does three things: it 1) fails to mention the Hizballah-led opposition's popular support across all demographics—even those opposing Syrian influence—as revealed in the dissolving of Myth One, 2) attempts to replace that reality with the implication that Hizballah is acting primarily in the interests of Iran and Syria, and 3) omits even a hint at what is actually driving the opposition to protest all this time: corrupt and unrepresentative government in Beirut.

If Hizballah and supporters were carrying out a coup, then why did Hizballah volunteer to give up the cordoning of their defeated opponents to the Lebanese Army at every turn? Why did they take no hostages or maintain a lock-down of Jumblatt's and Hariri's residences? Why did they stand down militarily in ceding those and other key military strongholds to the Lebanese Army at every possible juncture? If they wanted to, Hizballah could have easily taken over the government entirely, expelling the majority from Parliament, but they didn't. Hizballah is probably the only non-corrupt party in Lebanon; their history is not one of turning their arms on fellow countrymen. Say what you want. They are against violent insurrection.


— In smashing Myth One, it's revealed that Hizballahis joined by Shiites, Christians, and non-partisan Sunnis. This in itself represents a moral and political defeat for a majority government barely holding on to power under the currently skewed system of representation based on an outdated census and mob-rules democracy. If the opposition is receiving 17 months worth of mass protest support across all political and religious lines, then the "U.S.- and-Israeli-backed" factions (puppets) would be right to fear defeat in fair and all-inclusive elections.

All of which gives the current majority factions incentive to suddenly bring Hizballah's intelligence system to the fore and threaten to have it removed—something they knew would elicit a strong and swift response from Hizballah—in the hopes of casting Hizballah's actions a being subversive ("state-within-a-state"), reactionary, and ultimately harmful to Lebanese interests. (Needless to say, the opposition has prevailed nonetheless.)

— What media won't tell us is that the Lebanese government had accepted the proprietary telecommunications system run by Hizballah for the last twenty years or so, and that Hizballah has been transparent and flexible with the state in that area. The moves to declare the system illegal and remove the airport security chief were tyrannical and arguably treasonous. They were a calculated pretext for, if not an act of, war against the Lebanese people's Resistance.

Do the majority factions wish to cripple the country's defense against foreign invasion and occupation? Disabling Hizballah's ability to communicate securely and discretely could have done just that. Imagine elements within the U.S. government doing deliberate damage to the only military group capable of defending the U.S. from foreign invasions.

— If a coup was being staged at all, it was being done politically by the U.S. State Department and the Bush Administration. Israel and Saudi Arabia also have incentive to keep the corrupt puppet government in power in Lebanon. On the same day Hizballah began overtaking pro-government militias, Condolleeza Rice & Co were frothing and ready, being the first of very few going on record to ridiculously claim that Hizballah is killing innocent civilians and carrying out a coup, and that Iran and Syria were behind it all. So, the U.S. puppet-masters cast the first stones, and they were whoppers.

The same scenarios played out in media coverage during the Hamas-Fatah conflicts of June 2007, wherein U.S., Israeli, and allied Arab entities planned and attempted a failed military coup against Hamas. MSM and neothugs flooded the press and airwaves with claims that Hamas was staging a "violent bloody coup." Also, recall the "birth pangs" comment from Ms. Rice at the beginning of Israel's five-week carpet-bombing of Lebanon; that war was planned with U.S. assistance as well.

So, who is really behind all the unrest in Lebanon?

Don't buy the MSM bill of goods: it's full of disinformation, absent of context, and zeroed-out at neocon-Likudnik foreign policy. Get your information from other than agency bureaus that are staffed with U.S. and Israeli propaganda agents.

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