Lebanon's Justice Delayed

(Wall Street Journal) Editorial - On Thursday the world learned the identities of those indicted for the murder of Rafik Hariri. Moustapha Badreddine, brother-in-law of the late Hizbullah military supremo Imad Moughnieh, topped the four-man list. It is now up to the Lebanese government to serve arrest warrants to the four and pack them off to The Hague. We wouldn't be surprised if their whereabouts remain unknown for many years. There is a lesson here about what happens when the UN is handed the reins in any significant proceeding. Though UN investigator Detlev Mehlis worked quickly to show Syria's hand in ordering the hit, the investigation bogged down under subsequent investigators. Reports went missing, documents were leaked, a key Lebanese investigator was murdered. Above all, the political window during which the investigation had the full backing of a sympathetic Lebanese government closed. Nor is it likely that justice will ever be meted to those who gave Badreddine and his comrades their orders. Hizbullah is a disciplined and hierarchical organization that works hand-in-glove with Damascus and answers to its masters in Tehran. The fact that the indictments rose no higher than these four characters indicates how badly the overall enterprise has failed.

2011-07-01 00:00:00

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