Lebanon's Army and Hizbullah Join Ranks

(Institute for Contemporary Affairs-Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs) Brig.-Gen. (ret.) Dr. Shimon Shapira - Hizbullah has completed the process of usurping the Lebanese state and its institutions. The election of Michel Aoun as president, through a forced arrangement with Hizbullah, has fulfilled the Iranian vision of controlling Lebanon. Aoun's declaration that Hizbullah's military power is a main component of Lebanon's defense grants it the legal authority to operate as a legitimate military force. The Lebanese president's declaration has essentially removed Hizbullah from the restrictions of UN Security Council Resolution 1559 of September 2, 2004, that called for "the disbanding and disarmament of all Lebanese and non-Lebanese militias." Ibrahim al-Amin, editor of Al-Akhbar, who is very close to Hizbullah chief Hassan Nasrallah, asserted that despite Israel's attacks on weapon convoys to Hizbullah, "tens if not hundreds" of convoys have reached Lebanon from Syria. These weapons, al-Amin noted, arrive not only to the border front between Israel and Lebanon but also to the Golan Heights front. The main importance of these developments is the official recognition of Hizbullah's special status in Lebanon and its ability to deploy enormous military power that Iran has built in Lebanon against Israel. This poses a substantial risk to Lebanon. The new situation will enable Israel to operate freely against the Lebanese state, including its army and its civilian infrastructures, at any time that Hizbullah acts against Israel. The writer, a senior research associate at the Jerusalem Center, served as bureau chief to the Minister of Foreign Affairs and as military secretary to the Prime Minister.

2017-03-03 00:00:00

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