Documentary: ‘Steal of the Century’ (Part 2)

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The documentary ‘Steal of the Century’ shows the brutality of the occupation under which the Palestinian people live. (Photo: Video Grab)

‘Steal Of The Century’ (Part 2) is a documentary by Robert Inlakesh, filmed on the ground in occupied Palestine, investigating the peace process, Donald Trump’s proposed ‘Deal of the Century’ and why the Palestinian people have unanimously rejected it. It also seeks to show the brutality of the occupation under which the Palestinian people live, as well as a brief look into the history of Palestine-Israel.

Steal of the Century aims to provide the context leading up to Trump’s so-called peace plan, coupling together Palestinian voices with what International Law has to say about the issue. The documentary series is also built around the themes of the “final status issues”, as they are referred to, namely; borders, Jerusalem (al-Quds), Settlements and refugees. The focus is also placed on issues that fall under these categories.

Part 2 focuses on Bethlehem, the Gaza Strip, Refugees, Israeli Night Raids, Water Resources, and more. It features an interview with Sabreen Al-Najjar, the mother of Razan al-Najjar who was a 21-year-old nurse murdered by Israel during the Great Return March in 2018.

Credits:Cameraman: Hamde Abu RahmaEditing and Graphics by: Dias MussirovProduced, Written and Directed by: Robert Inlakesh for Press TV

Another Hiroshima is Coming…Unless We Stop It Now

by JOHN PILGER

Photograph Source: Oilstreet – Own work – CC BY 2.5

When I first went to Hiroshima in 1967, the shadow on the steps was still there. It was an almost perfect impression of a human being at ease: legs splayed, back bent, one hand by her side as she sat waiting for a bank to open.

At a quarter past eight on the morning of August 6, 1945, she and her silhouette were burned into the granite.

I stared at the shadow for an hour or more, then I walked down to the river where the survivors still lived in shanties.

I met a man called Yukio, whose chest was etched with the pattern of the shirt he was wearing when the atomic bomb was dropped.

He described a huge flash over the city, “a bluish light, something like an electrical short”, after which wind blew like a tornado and black rain fell. “I was thrown on the ground and noticed only the stalks of my flowers were left. Everything was still and quiet, and when I got up, there were people naked, not saying anything. Some of them had no skin or hair. I was certain I was dead.”

Nine years later, I returned to look for him and he was dead from leukaemia.

“No radioactivity in Hiroshima ruin” said The New York Times front page on 13 September, 1945, a classic of planted disinformation. “General Farrell,” reported William H. Lawrence, “denied categorically that [the atomic bomb] produced a dangerous, lingering radioactivity.”

Only one reporter, Wilfred Burchett, an Australian, had braved the perilous journey to Hiroshima in the immediate aftermath of the atomic bombing, in defiance of the Allied occupation authorities, which controlled the “press pack”.

“I write this as a warning to the world,” reported Burchett in the London Daily Express  of September 5,1945. Sitting in the rubble with his Baby Hermes typewriter, he described hospital wards filled with people with no visible injuries who were dying from what he called “an atomic plague”.

For this, his press accreditation was withdrawn, he was pilloried and smeared. His witness to the truth was never forgiven.

The atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki was an act of premeditated mass murder that unleashed a weapon of intrinsic criminality. It was justified by lies that form the bedrock of America’s war propaganda in the 21st century, casting a new enemy, and target – China.

During the 75 years since Hiroshima, the most enduring lie is that the atomic bomb was dropped to end the war in the Pacific and to save lives.

“Even without the atomic bombing attacks,” concluded the United States Strategic Bombing Survey of 1946, “air supremacy over Japan could have exerted sufficient pressure to bring about unconditional surrender and obviate the need for invasion. “Based on a detailed investigation of all the facts, and supported by the testimony of the surviving Japanese leaders involved, it is the Survey’s opinion that … Japan would have surrendered even if the atomic bombs had not been dropped, even if Russia had not entered the war [against Japan] and even if no invasion had been planned or contemplated.”

The National Archives in Washington contains documented Japanese peace overtures as early as 1943. None was pursued. A cable sent on May 5, 1945 by the German ambassador in Tokyo and intercepted by the US made clear the Japanese were desperate to sue for peace, including “capitulation even if the terms were hard”. Nothing was done.

The US Secretary of War, Henry Stimson, told President Truman he was “fearful” that the US Air Force would have Japan so “bombed out” that the new weapon would not be able “to show its strength”. Stimson later admitted that “no effort was made, and none was seriously considered, to achieve surrender merely in order not to have to use the [atomic] bomb”.

Stimson’s foreign policy colleagues — looking ahead to the post-war era they were then shaping “in our image”, as Cold War planner George Kennan famously put it — made clear they were eager “to browbeat the Russians with the [atomic] bomb held rather ostentatiously on our hip”. General Leslie Groves, director of the Manhattan Project that made the atomic bomb, testified: “There was never any illusion on my part that Russia was our enemy, and that the project was conducted on that basis.”

The day after Hiroshima was obliterated, President Harry Truman voiced his satisfaction with the “overwhelming success” of “the experiment”.

The “experiment” continued long after the war was over. Between 1946 and 1958, the United States exploded 67 nuclear bombs in the Marshall Islands in the Pacific: the equivalent of more than one Hiroshima every day for 12 years.

The human and environmental consequences were catastrophic. During the filming of my documentary, The Coming War on China, I chartered a small aircraft and flew to Bikini Atoll in the Marshalls. It was here that the United States exploded the world’s first Hydrogen Bomb. It remains poisoned earth. My shoes registered “unsafe” on my Geiger counter. Palm trees stood in unworldly formations. There were no birds.

I trekked through the jungle to the concrete bunker where, at 6.45 on the morning of March 1, 1954, the button was pushed. The sun, which had risen, rose again and vaporised an entire island in the lagoon, leaving a vast black hole, which from the air is a menacing spectacle: a deathly void in a place of beauty.

The radioactive fall-out spread quickly and “unexpectedly”. The official history claims “the wind changed suddenly”. It was the first of many lies, as declassified documents and the victims’ testimony reveal.

Gene Curbow, a meteorologist assigned to monitor the test site, said, “They knew where the radioactive fall-out was going to go. Even on the day of the shot, they still had an opportunity to evacuate people, but [people] were not evacuated; I was not evacuated… The United States needed some guinea pigs to study what the effects of radiation would do.”

Like Hiroshima, the secret of the Marshall Islands was a calculated experiment on the lives of large numbers of people. This was Project 4.1, which began as a scientific study of mice and became an experiment on “human beings exposed to the radiation of a nuclear weapon”.

The Marshall Islanders I met in 2015 — like the survivors of Hiroshima I interviewed in the 1960s and 70s — suffered from a range of cancers, commonly thyroid cancer; thousands had already died. Miscarriages and stillbirths were common; those babies who lived were often deformed horribly.

Unlike Bikini, nearby Rongelap atoll had not been evacuated during the H-Bomb test. Directly downwind of Bikini, Rongelap’s skies darkened and it rained what first appeared to be snowflakes.  Food and water were contaminated; and the population fell victim to cancers. That is still true today.

I met Nerje Joseph, who showed me a photograph of herself as a child on Rongelap. She had terrible facial burns and much of her was hair missing. “We were bathing at the well on the day the bomb exploded,” she said. “White dust started falling from the sky. I reached to catch the powder. We used it as soap to wash our hair. A few days later, my hair started falling out.”

Lemoyo Abon said, “Some of us were in agony. Others had diarrhoea. We were terrified. We thought it must be the end of the world.”

US official archive film I included in my film refers to the islanders as “amenable savages”. In the wake of the explosion, a US Atomic Energy Agency official is seen boasting that Rongelap “is by far the most contaminated place on earth”, adding, “it will be interesting to get a measure of human uptake when people live in a contaminated environment.”

American scientists, including medical doctors, built distinguished careers studying the “human uptake’. There they are in flickering film, in their white coats, attentive with their clipboards. When an islander died in his teens, his family received a sympathy card from the scientist who studied him.

I have reported from five nuclear “ground zeros” throughout the world — in Japan, the Marshall Islands, Nevada, Polynesia and Maralinga in Australia. Even more than my experience as a war correspondent, this has taught me about the ruthlessness and immorality of great power: that is, imperial power, whose cynicism is the true enemy of humanity.

This struck me forcibly when I filmed at Taranaki Ground Zero at Maralinga in the Australian desert. In a dish-like crater was an obelisk on which was inscribed: “A British atomic weapon was test exploded here on 9 October 1957”. On the rim of the crater was this sign:

WARNING: RADIATION HAZARD 

Radiation levels for a few hundred metres

around this point may be above those considered

safe for permanent occupation.

For as far as the eye could see, and beyond, the ground was irradiated. Raw plutonium lay about, scattered like talcum powder: plutonium is so dangerous to humans that a third of a milligram gives a 50 per cent chance of cancer.

The only people who might have seen the sign were Indigenous Australians, for whom there was no warning. According to an official account, if they were lucky “they were shooed off like rabbits”.

Today, an unprecedented campaign of propaganda is shooing us all off like rabbits. We are not meant to question the daily torrent of anti-Chinese rhetoric, which is rapidly overtaking the torrent of anti-Russia rhetoric. Anything Chinese is bad, anathema, a threat: Wuhan …. Huawei. How confusing it is when “our” most reviled leader says so.

The current phase of this campaign began not with Trump but with Barack Obama, who in 2011 flew to Australia to declare the greatest build-up of US naval forces in the Asia-Pacific region since World War Two. Suddenly, China was a “threat”. This was nonsense, of course. What was threatened was America’s unchallenged psychopathic view of itself as the richest, the most successful, the most “indispensable” nation.

What was never in dispute was its prowess as a bully — with more than 30 members of the United Nations suffering American sanctions of some kind and a trail of the blood running through defenceless countries bombed, their governments overthrown, their  elections interfered with, their resources plundered.

Obama’s declaration became known as the “pivot to Asia”. One of its principal advocates was his Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, who, as WikiLeaks revealed, wanted to rename the Pacific Ocean “the American Sea”.

Whereas Clinton never concealed her warmongering, Obama was a maestro of marketing.”I state clearly and with conviction,” said the new president in 2009, “that America’s commitment is to seek the peace and security of a world without nuclear weapons.”

Obama increased spending on nuclear warheads faster than any president since the end of the Cold War. A “usable” nuclear weapon was developed. Known as the B61 Model 12, it means, according to General James Cartwright, former vice-chair of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, that “going smaller [makes its use] more thinkable”.

The target is China. Today, more than 400 American military bases almost encircle China with missiles, bombers, warships and nuclear weapons. From Australia north through the Pacific to South-East Asia, Japan and Korea and across Eurasia to Afghanistan and India, the bases form, as one US strategist told me, “the perfect noose”.

A study by the RAND Corporation – which, since Vietnam, has planned America’s wars – is entitled War with China: Thinking Through the Unthinkable. Commissioned by the US Army, the authors evoke the infamous catch cry of its chief Cold War strategist, Herman Kahn – “thinking the unthinkable”. Kahn’s book, On Thermonuclear War, elaborated a plan for a “winnable” nuclear war.

Kahn’s apocalyptic view is shared by Trump’s Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, an evangelical fanatic who believes in the “rapture of the End”. He is perhaps the most dangerous man alive. “I was CIA director,” he boasted, “We lied, we cheated, we stole. It was like we had entire training courses.”  Pompeo’s obsession is China.

The endgame of Pompeo’s extremism is rarely if ever discussed in the Anglo-American media, where the myths and fabrications about China are standard fare, as were the lies about Iraq. A virulent racism is the sub-text of this propaganda. Classified “yellow” even though they were white, the Chinese are the only ethnic group to have been banned by an “exclusion act” from entering the United States, because they were Chinese. Popular culture declared them sinister, untrustworthy, “sneaky”, depraved, diseased, immoral.

An Australian magazine, The Bulletin, was devoted to promoting fear of the “yellow peril” as if all of Asia was about to fall down on the whites-only colony by the force of gravity.

As the historian Martin Powers writes, acknowledging China’s  modernism, its secular morality and “contributions to liberal thought threatened European face, so it became necessary to suppress China’s role in the Enlightenment debate …. For centuries, China’s threat to the myth of Western superiority has made it an easy target for race-baiting.”

In the Sydney Morning Herald, tireless China-basher Peter Hartcher described those who spread Chinese influence in Australia as “rats, flies, mosquitoes and sparrows”. Hartcher, who favourably quotes the American demagogue Steve Bannon, likes to interpret the “dreams” of the current Chinese elite, to which he is apparently privy. These are inspired by yearnings for the “Mandate of Heaven” of 2,000 years ago. Ad nausea.

To combat this “mandate”, the Australian government of Scott Morrison has committed one of the most secure countries on earth, whose major trading partner is China, to hundreds of billions of dollars’ worth of American missiles that can be fired at China.

The trickledown is already evident. In a country historically scarred by violent racism towards Asians, Australians of Chinese descent have formed a vigilante group to protect delivery riders. Phone videos show a delivery rider punched in the face and a Chinese couple racially abused in a supermarket. Between April and June, there were almost 400 racist attacks on Asian-Australians. 

“We are not your enemy,” a high-ranking strategist in China told me, “but if you [in the West] decide we are, we must prepare without delay.” China’s arsenal is small compared with America’s, but it is growing fast, especially the development of maritime missiles designed to destroy fleets of ships.

“For the first time,” wrote Gregory Kulacki of the Union of Concerned Scientists, “China is discussing putting its nuclear missiles on high alert so that they can be launched quickly on warning of an attack… This would be a significant and dangerous change in Chinese policy…”

In Washington, I met Amitai Etzioni, distinguished professor of international affairs at George Washington University, who wrote that a “blinding attack on China” was planned, “with strikes that could be mistakenly perceived [by the Chinese] as pre-emptive attempts to take out its nuclear weapons, thus cornering them into a terrible use-it-or-lose-it dilemma [that would] lead to nuclear war.”

In 2019, the US staged its biggest single military exercise since the Cold War, much of it in high secrecy. An armada of ships and long-range bombers rehearsed an “Air-Sea Battle Concept for China” – ASB – blocking sea lanes in the Straits of Malacca and cutting off China’s access to oil, gas and other raw materials from the Middle East and Africa.

It is fear of such a blockade that has seen China develop its Belt and Road Initiative along the old Silk Road to Europe and urgently build strategic airstrips on disputed reefs and islets in the Spratly Islands.

In Shanghai, I met Lijia Zhang, a Beijing journalist and novelist, typical of a new class of outspoken mavericks. Her best-selling book has the ironic title Socialism Is Great! Having grown up in the chaotic, brutal Cultural Revolution, she has travelled and lived in the US and Europe. “Many Americans imagine,” she said, “that Chinese people live a miserable, repressed life with no freedom whatsoever. The [idea of] the yellow peril has never left them… They have no idea there are some 500 million people being lifted out of poverty, and some would say it’s 600 million.”

Modern China’s epic achievements, its defeat of mass poverty, and the pride and contentment of its people (measured forensically by American pollsters such as Pew) are wilfully unknown or misunderstood in the West. This alone is a commentary on the lamentable state of Western journalism and the abandonment of honest reporting.

China’s repressive dark side and what we like to call its “authoritarianism” are the facade we are allowed to see almost exclusively. It is as if we are fed unending tales of the evil super-villain Dr. Fu Manchu. And it is time we asked why: before it is too late to stop the next Hiroshima.

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John Pilger can be reached through his website: www.johnpilger.com

Syrian Diaries: 9 Years of War

Posted by INTERNATIONALIST 360° on 

It’s now the tenth year since protests turned into war in Syria. Veterans and a TV cameraman look back on how they first got caught up in a conflict they didn’t understand. They share with RT Documentary the memories of bullets and explosions they live with, the losses they’ve experienced, and how their homeland has been changed by violence.

US Forces Ordered to Stay in Bunkers During IRGC Drills – Reports

US Forces Ordered to Stay in Bunkers During IRGC Drills - Reports

By Staff, Agencies

US military forces deployed to the Gulf kingdoms were reportedly ordered to stay in bunkers as Iran’s Islamic Revolution Guard Corps [IRGC] fired ballistic missiles during normal military drills off the strategic Hormuz Strait.

Citing her “sources” and those of the CNN, a reporter for the BBC wrote in a post on her official page on Tuesday that US troops based in the United Arab Emirates [UAE], Kuwait and Qatar had been briefly put on “high alert” due to “concerns” over Iran’s missile activities.

Other sources identified the facilities as al-Dhafra base in the UAE and al-Udeid air base in Qatar, saying the American troops deployed there had been asked to stay in bunkers.

US forces in Qatar and the UAE “went on high alert early Tuesday and were asked to stay in bunkers, due to intelligence indicators showing an Iranian ballistic missile had been fired and possibly headed their way, US officials tell CNN,” a Twitter user said, indicating that the US forces had misread the trajectory of Iranian missiles.

The reported high-alert notice came as the IRGC started the final phase of large-scale aerial and naval drills, codenamed Payambar-e Azam [The Great Prophet] 14, involving the elite force’s Aerospace Division and Navy.

The maneuvers were held in the general area of the Hormozgan Province, west of the strategic Hormuz Strait, and the Gulf.

The drills featured missiles, vessels, drones, and radars, and are designed to practice both offensive and defensive missions.

Tuesday saw the Corps stage strikes against the life-size replica of a Nimitz-class US aircraft carrier, which the American navy usually sails into the Gulf through the Strait of Hormuz.

The high-alert notice came a week after Leader of the Islamic Revolution His Eminence Imam Sayyed Ali Khamenei said Iran would definitely deliver a “counterblow” to the United States over the assassination of top anti-terror commander Lieutenant General Qassem Soleimani in January.

“The Islamic Republic of Iran will never forget this issue and will definitely deal the counterblow to the Americans,” Imam Khamenei said while receiving visiting Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi in Tehran last week.

General Soleimani, former commander of the IRGC’s Quds Force, was assassinated in a US airstrike at Baghdad airport on January 3 upon an order by US President Donald Trump.

US bases in Middle East were on high alert over Iranian missile fire: report

By News Desk -2020-07-29

The first batch of Rafale fighter jets are set to arrive in India’s Ambala Air Base on Wednesday afternoon after covering the 7,000 kilometers from France. The jets were stationed overnight at the Al Dhafra Air Base in the UAE. The same air base houses US and French troops and aircraft.

An alert was sounded at the Al Dhafra Air Base in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) late Tuesday after intelligence indicators hinted at an incoming “Iranian missile possibly headed that way”. The Rafale fighter jets bound for India were also at the UAE base as part of an overnight stay.

Barbara Starr from American news channel CNN reported that there was intel on Iranian missiles, but US officials confirmed that no missile struck the facility. Three Iranian missiles reportedly splashed down in the waters near the base as part of Iran’s current military exercises. More

Watch: Iranian ballistic missiles fired from underground sites

BEIRUT, LEBANON (4:45 P.M.) – The Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) fired ballistic missiles from underground platforms during the second day of the massive ‘Great Prophet-14’ military drills in the southwestern part of the country on Wednesday.

The successful firing of ballistic missiles fully hidden in camouflage deep under the ground is an important achievement that could pose serious challenges to enemy intelligence agencies, the Fars News Agency reported.

In the final stage of the IRGC’s drills, which took place in the waters of the Persian Gulf and the Strait of Hormuz, the IRGC Aerospace Force’s drones attacked a mock enemy aircraft carrier and targeted its command tower and bridge.

Also, the IRGC’s Sukhoi-22 fighters bombed and destroyed pre-determined targets in Faror Islands with winged bombs.

The IRGC Aerospace and Naval Forces’ joint exercises played an important part of the drills and demonstrated surprising tactics, including the establishment of joint command systems, joint control, combined tactics and combat methods.

Iranian forces conduct naval operation against mock US aircraft carrier: video

Successful missile combat operations were carried out by firing two surface-to-surface Hurmoz and Fateh missiles, and a ballistic missile at specific targets, as well as launching precision-striking air defense missiles.

Also, Shahed 181, Mohajer and Bavar drones successfully attacked and destroyed hypothetical enemy targets and positions at this stage of the drills.

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The Untold in the Trump Illegal F-15s Menacing Iranian Airplane over Syria

Source

July 27, 2020 Miri Wood

Mahan Air airplane, legally flying from Tehran to Beirut, was 'buzzed' by Trump regime illegal jets, in Syrian airspace. Several passengers were injured.
Mahan Air, legally flying from Tehran to Beirut, was ‘buzzed’ by Trump regime illegal jets, in Syrian airspace. Several passengers were injured.

The Trump regime illegal forces in Syria deployed two F-15 bomber jets to dangerously menace Iranian civilian airplane 23 July, in al Tanf, which is in Syria, which is not in the USA. This was an act of terrorism in Syrian airspace, which put the lives of every person on the plane at risk. Multiple injuries were reported and treated upon the plane’s safe landing in its Beirut Airport destination.

Though early reports claimed the bomber jets were Israeli, the pilot reported that the illegal F-15 pilots identified themselves as “American.” The early reports were based on Israel’s successful war criminal use of the Russian IL 20 as a ‘human shield’ in September 2018.

It is an educated guess that the blood-lusting Trump regime war criminals were likely hoping for a replay of carnage in Syrian airspace, similar to the massacre when US fighter jets tricked the Iranian air defense — near the borders with Iraq –making them add more alert level which led to the shooting down of Ukraine International Airline Flight 752. The Trump regime maneuver succeeded in killing 167 of its passengers on 8 January 2020.

Not that the US needs any justification to shoot down a civilian airplane, especially an Iranian one, the USA did deliberately shoot down Iran Air Flight 655 back in 1988 killing all 290 people onboard passengers and crew and they even bragged about that. But here, they were plotting to embarrass Syria by provoking Syrian air defense to shoot at the US fighter jets and hit the Iranian plane instead, and to embarrass Iran after the latter signed a new defense treaty with Syria to provide Iranian advanced air defense missiles to Syria.

People in the Levant, and in the whole region, as a matter of fact, can’t see any difference between US and Israeli methods, tactics, or any acts that always end with a war crime.

More here

‘We won’t reveal our response, let Israel speculate’: Hezbollah’s No. 2

Source

‘We won’t reveal our response, let Israel speculate’: Hezbollah’s No. 2
http://middleeastobserver.net/we-wont-reveal-our-response-let-israel-speculate-hezbollahs-no-2/

Description:

In an interview with Al Mayadeen TV, Hezbollah’s Deputy Secretary General, Sheikh Naaim Qassem said that his group has decided that at this moment, the Lebanese group will not reveal what it will do exactly in response to the killing of one of its men in an Israeli airstrike on Damascus in recent days.

‘The Israelis can (understand) and calculate from (this stance) what they wish’, Qaasem added.

Hezbollah’s deputy leader also strongly condemned the America military’s recent interception of a civilian Iranian passenger plane carrying Lebanese passengers, which led to the serious injury of many of them.

Qassem said that this was ‘American state terrorism’ that runs contrary to international law and human rights charters.

The Americans sought with this crime to announce their military presence in Syria, and to send the message that there will not be a solution to the conflict in the Arab country (any time soon), Qaasem added.

Source: Al Mayadeen TV (YouTube)

Date: 26 July, 2020

(Important note: Please help us keep producing independent translations for you by contributing as little as $1/month here)

Transcript:

Hezbollah’s Deputy Secretary General, Sheikh Naeem Qaasem:

(In response to Israeli killing of Hezbollah member in Syria)

What occurred in Syria is an aggression that led to the martyrdom of the mujahid Ali Kamil Mohsen. We have surely studied this issue, and we decided that we will not announce what we will do (exactly in response). The Israelis can (understand) and calculate from (this stance) what they wish. For this reason, at this moment, there is no answer to this question (of our exact response and its timing), while (we) await the coming days.


Host: Period?


Sheikh Qaasem: Period.


Host:

Your eminence Sheikh (Qaasem), regarding the rules of engagement that you have delineated, and which have been specified by the Secretary General of Hezbollah, his eminence Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah i.e. ‘any (Israeli) targeting of (any) one of our cadres in Syria, leading to his martyrdom, will incur a direct response’. This is the rule of engagement (with Israel). Are you committed to this rule?


Sheikh Qaasem:

I will not reply to this question in an indirect way. However, there is something clear to all: that (this) rule of engagement with Israel still stands. Subsequently, we have no intention of altering or changing this rule of engagement, no matter how much Israel tries to change it.

This is based on the fact that Lebanon cannot be protected from Israeli aggression except via the rules of engagement that (Hezbollah) has established after the year 2006. What safeguarded Lebanon for these past 14 years is the existence of a deterrence, the (serious) nature of which the Israelis know very well, and the Israelis also know very well that Lebanon is not a forsaken land, and that they cannot do with it whatever they please.

If here we are talking about the rules of engagement, then (I can confirm) that there are no changes in the rules of engagement.


Host: Absolutely no change…


Sheikh Qaasem:

As for the incident (targeting our cadre in Syria) itself, there is no (explicit) answer (at this moment), and what we will do may appear at the appropriate time.

(US military’s interception of Iranian civilian passenger plane)

Sheikh Qaasem:

The Lebanese government must express its opinion on this issue, and to announce its stance towards this incident, because the plane was holding Lebanese (citizens), and the plane reached Beirut airport. This means that (the Lebanese government) is directly concerned with this issue.

I do not know if at the next meeting of government ministers they will come out with a stance, yet we as Hezbollah have announced our stance, and we said clearly that this is a terrorist act, and this is American state terrorism that is reoccurring in various forms.

Is it conceivable that a civilian plane is attacked by two warplanes, as the civilian plane is running its normal course from Tehran to Beirut? This act runs contrary to international law, human rights charters, and all standards.

What I understood is that the Iranian officials intend to submit a complaint on the international level via the United Nations Security Council and these known channels. We (as Hezbollah) issued the required stance.

Yes, it is required that the entire international community, and that all forces – including the Lebanese government – at the very least express their objection to this act, based on the principle that such (sovereign and civilian) cannot be the place for sending (political and military) messages, nor for carrying out aggression. Whoever wishes to settle scores can go carry out attacks on (military-related) personnel and we will then see the result.

Host:

Do you have an idea regarding the motives of the Americans for carrying out such an action?

Sheikh Qaasem:

I don’t have detailed information, it has not become available to us as yet. It is clear that the Americans wish to say that ‘we are here, in the Tanaf region of Syria’, and they are imposing a type of (military) control to imply that in Syria there will be no solution; they will not allow the solution to arise. They have carved out an area of the land and imposed a no-fly-zone to protect and reassure Israel in actual fact. It is also aimed at giving the ability and safe zones for forces who attacked and ruined Syria, just like the other safe zones in Idlib and the north (of Syria) that are sponsored by America in various ways.

Related

US jet took off from base in Jordan to intercept Iranian airliner in Syria: media

Source

By News Desk -2020-07-26

A pair of U.S. Air Force F-15E Strike Eagles fly over northern Iraq after conducting airstrikes in Syria

BEIRUT, LEBANON (9:45 P.M.) – New details about the U.S.’ interception of Mahan Air plane have been released by the Iranian media this week, including the origin of the American jets that were involved.

According to Al-Alam TV, the U.S. F-15 jets took off from the Azraq Airbase in Jordan and intercepted the Iranian airliner in the Homs Governorate on the night of Thursday, July 24th.

The Al-Alam report stated that this base is the same one that was used by the drone that  carried out the assassination of the late commander of the Quds Force, Major General Qassim Soleimani, on January 3, 2020 near Baghdad International Airport.

The sources indicated that the two American fighters intercepted the Iranian plane once over the Al-Tanf region  in Syrian airspace and another near the Lebanese-Syrian border.

They  said that this indicates that the two American fighters were targeting the plane or pushing it into a trap that would result in the Syrian air defenses shooting down the aircraft.

This theory was first introduced by the Syrian Ambassador to the United Nations, Dr. Bashar Al-Ja’afari, and it has since been referenced several times by the Iranian media.

The U.S. has not commented on these claims from Iran and Syria; however, the U.S. Central Command (Centcom) did say that the interception only involved one jet and it was done so to protect the American troops in Al-Tanf.

Related News

Sheikh Qassem ٍSays Won’t Clarify Nature of Hezbollah Response to Zionist Strike on Syria: Let the Israelis Have Their Own Estimations

July 27, 2020

Source: Al-Manar English Website

Hezbollah Deputy Secretary General, Sheikh Naim Qassem

Hezbollah Deputy Secretary General Sheikh Naim Qassem stressed that the Resistance will not allow the Israeli enemy to change the rules of engagement, reiterating its capability to confront any Zionist war.

“Israel’s political confusion and low expectation from war outcomes as well as the US President Donald Trump’s quagmire eliminate the possibility of an imminent eruption of the war.”

In an interview with Al-Mayadeen News Channel Sunday night, Sheikh Qassem pointed out that what happened in Syria was an Israeli attack which claimed the martyr Ali Kamel Mohsen, rejecting to clarify the nature of Hezbollah response to this assault.

Let the Israelis have their own estimations and calculations in this regard, according to Hezbollah Deputy Secretary General who added that the Resistance response to any Zionist war will employ military capabilities much more developed than those it used during 2006 War.

Commenting on the US interception of the Iranian passenger plane in the Syrian airspace, Sheikh Qassem emphasized that the Americans want to frustrate and deactivate the strategic pact between Iran and Syria.

“Absence of US strategic project in the Middle East will allow the axis of resistance to achieve more victories.”

Sheikh Qassem indicated that the major countries do not want to help Lebanon financially in order to impose on it to play a role that serves the ISraeli interests in the region.

Hezbollah seeks Lebanon’s strength and independence, Sheikh Qassem said, adding that the party’s popularity, not military power, enabled it to be represented effectively in the parliament and the government.

Sheikh Qassem indicated that Turkey is trying to establish a political influence in northern Lebanon through supporting certain figures, like Ashraf Rifi and Nabil Al-Halabi.

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Lebanon’s FM Vehemently Condemns Interception of Civilian Airliner by American Jets

Lebanon’s FM Vehemently Condemns Interception of Civilian Airliner by American Jets

By Staff

Beirut – In his first comments on an incident involving two US fighter jets that intercepted an Iranian civilian aircraft with Lebanese nationals on board, Lebanon’s Foreign Minister Nassif Hitti expressed his condemnation of the dangerous episode to Al-Ahed News.

Hitti blasted and protested the harassment of a civilian passenger aircraft because it endangers the safety of civilians.

He described any attempt to intercept a civilian plane with a military aircraft as unacceptable, noting that Lebanon adheres to and respects international norms and laws.

Moreover, Lebanon’s top diplomat condemned and rejected all attempts to intercept civilian aircraft.

“Even if there were no Lebanese on board, we would still protest,” Hitti added and noted that the presence of Lebanese nationals only reinforces the existing position. The issue, in Hitti’s view, is not political but rather related to international standards and norms.

In response to a question about whether Lebanon lodged a complaint or made international contacts due to the presence of Lebanese passengers on board, Hitti indicated that the airliner has the right to make the calls.

The foreign minister also shed light on the issue of extending the stay of UNIFIL forces operating in southern Lebanon until the end of next August. He affirmed that there are attempts by some to redefine the tasks of the peacekeeping forces in the south, and “we confirm our position that we do not want to change their numbers and reject any attempt to change UNIFIL’s task.”

“We have received support from some countries in this context, including Italy, where the Italian foreign and defense ministers assured us that the Italian force is committed to not compromising the tasks,” Hitti added.

“It is true that maintaining security and stability in the south is in Lebanon’s interest, but also in the interests of the region and the world. We welcome UNIFIL, and there is continuous coordination between it and the Lebanese army.”

Hitti also underscored Lebanon’s commitment to both Resolution 1701 and the current framework that UNIFIL operates in. 

On a separate topic, Hitti expressed his concerns regarding the annexation of the Jordan Valley, an issue he labeled as important.

In his opinion, this is one of the top issues, and the attempt by “Israel” to annex even a part of the Jordan Valley has not been halted, but postponed.

“This matter has great repercussions on the region, and we must be alert,” Hitti warned and stressed the need for caution about this matter because the danger of annexation still exists.

“We all need to be alert about this flagrant violation and its repercussions, and this is not new, as all ‘Israeli’ policies are based on breaching international resolutions and legitimacy.”

Report: OPCW Leaks Show US Cover-Up of Illegal Syria Bombing

Report: OPCW Leaks Show US Cover-Up of Illegal Syria Bombing

By Staff, Agencies

Leaked documents from the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons [OPCW] show that the administration of US President Donald Trump bombed Syria in 2018 on false grounds and pressured officials at the chemical weapons watchdog to cover it up, an American weekly magazine reports.

Analyzing the leaks, The Nation reported on Friday that the OPCW had manipulated the original report on the alleged chemical attack in the city of Douma near the capital Damascus on April 7, 2018.

The US and its allies were quick to blame the incident on the government of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

Damascus, however, said that no chemical attack happened and that the incident was staged by foreign intelligence agencies to pressure the government in the face of army advances against foreign-backed terrorists.

One week after the Douma incident, the US, Britain and France launched a coordinated missile attack against sites and research facilities near Damascus and Homs with the purported goal of paralyzing the Syrian government’s capability to produce chemicals.

In March 2019, the OPCW concluded in its final report that there are “reasonable grounds” to believe that a chemical weapons attack occurred in Douma and that “the toxic chemical was likely molecular chlorine.”

But, subsequent internal OPCW documents, including a trove published by WikiLeaks, revealed that the Douma investigators’ initial report had reached different conclusions from their organization’s published version.

According to the report, the leaks reveal that senior OPCW officials “reedited” the Douma investigators’ original report, “removed or misrepresented” key facts and rewrote conclusions in a bid to support the allegation that a chlorine gas attack had occurred in Douma.

“Yet the team’s initial report did not conclude that a chemical attack occurred, and left open the possibility that victims were killed in a ‘non-chemical related’ incident,” it added.

The report also referred to a toxicology review which found that observed symptoms of the civilians in Douma, particularly the rapid onset of excessive frothing, as well as the concentration of victims filmed in the apartment building so close to fresh air, “were inconsistent with exposure to chlorine, and no other obvious candidate chemical causing the symptoms could be identified.”

It further said chemical tests of the samples collected in Douma showed that chlorine compounds were, in most cases, “detected at what amounted to trace quantities in the parts-per-billion range” and that they could have resulted from “contact with household products such as bleach or come from chlorinated water or wood preservatives.”

The author of the initial POCW report protested the revisions in an e-mail, saying the altered version “misrepresents the facts,” thereby “undermining its credibility.”

After the e-mail of protest, a US government delegation met with members of the investigation team in an attempt to convince them that the Syrian government had committed a chemical attack with chlorine.

Veteran reporter Jonathan Steele said the Douma team saw the meeting as “unacceptable pressure and a violation of the OPCW’s declared principles of independence and impartiality.”

Meanwhile, the OPCW’s final report claimed that gas cylinders found in Douma likely came from Syrian military aircraft, but an unpublished engineering study found that the cylinders were manually placed.

“The OPCW leadership has yet to offer a substantive explanation for why they excluded critical findings and radically altered the original report. Instead, it has denigrated the two members of the Douma fact-finding mission team who challenged the manipulation of their investigation,” The Nation reported.

Ian Henderson and another unnamed OPCW inspector are the whistleblowers who challenged the whitewash at the chemical weapons watchdog.

OPCW Director General Fernando Arias claimed that the pair had committed “deliberate and premeditated breaches of confidentiality.”

A third OPCW official, who was speaking on the condition of anonymity, said he was “horrified” by the “abhorrent…mistreatment” of the pair.

“I fully support their endeavors,” he added. “They are in fact trying to protect the integrity of the organization which has been hijacked and brought into shameful disrepute.”

“The possibility that the United States may have bombed Syria based on falsehoods – and pressured a global investigative body to grant that intervention legitimacy after the fact –should break the media blockade. So too should the fact that it was exposed by whistleblowers who face risk for speaking out,” The Nation reported.

Former OPCW head Jose Bustani said, “The convincing evidence of irregular behavior in the OPCW investigation of the alleged Douma chemical attack confirms doubts and suspicions I already had.”

“The picture is certainly clearer now, although very disturbing,” he added, expressing hope that the outcry over the Douma leaks “will catalyze a process by which the [OPCW] can be resurrected to become the independent and non-discriminatory body it used to be.”

US Warplanes Harassed Iran Airliner in Lebanese, Not Syrian Airspace – Report

US Warplanes Harassed Iran Airliner in Lebanese, Not Syrian Airspace - Report

By Staff, Agencies

American F-15 warplanes involved in the harassment of an Iranian passenger plane approaching the Beirut airport were not ‘on a routine air mission,’ according to a report that dismissed a claim otherwise made by a US military official.

The Nournews agency on Friday cited an unnamed source familiar with the matter that contrary to the remarks made by CENTCOM’s spokesman, Bill Urban, the US jets “intercepted the Iranian plane after violating Lebanon’s airspace” and were not on “a routine air mission” when they flew close to the Mahan Air plane.

The source added that the F-15s harassed the Iranian plane in Lebanon’s sky when it was dropping its altitude to approach the Beirut airport.

On Thursday night, US warplanes operating illegally in Syria conducted some “dangerous” maneuvering close to the Mahan Air flight in an act of air piracy.

The American aircraft ignored several warnings by the Iranian pilot about the urgency to observe the distance but they continued the maneuver, the source said.

The Mahan Air Flight 1152 had taken off from Tehran and was en route to the Lebanese capital when the incident happened.

CENTCOM claimed that a single F-15 had made a “visual inspection” of the Iranian airliner “in accordance with international standards… to ensure the safety of coalition personnel” at the military base in Syria’s al-Tanf.

It added that the F-15 conducted “a standard visual inspection of a Mahan Air passenger airliner at a safe distance of approximately 1,000 meters.”

Meanwhile, the adviser to Iran’s parliament speaker on international affairs, Hossein Amir-Abdollahian, said on Friday that severe consequences await the US military’s act of provocation.

“The harassment of an Iranian passenger plane by American fighter jets once again proved that the presence of foreigners in the region is a serious threat to peace and security,” he said in a post on his Twitter account.

He added that likewise the Zionists cannot carry out a provocative act and “immediately say that we were not involved.”

Hezbollah Slams US Aggression on Iranian Civilian Airliner in Syrian Airspace

Hezbollah Slams US Aggression on Iranian Civilian Airliner in Syrian Airspace

Translated by Staff, Hezbollah Media Relations

https://www.english.alahednews.com.lb/54338/385Hezbollah issued the following statement:

Hezbollah strongly condemns the act of aggression by American fighter jets that threatened and terrorized an Iranian civilian airliner in Syrian airspace. We consider this an act of terrorism and a very dangerous matter that could have had unforeseen regional repercussions.

The two American warplanes intercepting a civilian aircraft that was also carrying Lebanese nationals is a maneuver that demands a decisive international stance against the US, bearing in mind that the Americans are an occupying force on Syrian territory and in its airspace.

Hezbollah congratulates all the passengers on board, especially the Lebanese citizens, on their safe arrival. It expresses its solidarity with the Islamic Republic of Iran and the Syrian Arab Republic against the abhorrent American behavior.

Iran to legally pursue US ‘act of terrorism’ against its Beirut-bound flight

Source

Friday, 24 July 2020 10:31 AM

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
A file photo of a Mahan Air passenger plane

Iran has condemned the harassment of its Beirut-bound passenger plane by two US fighter jets over the Syrian airspace, vowing to lodge a complaint over the “unlawful” act at the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO).

In a statement on Friday, the Civil Aviation Organization of Iran said it will seriously pursue the US fighter jets’ harassment of Mahan Air flight 1151 over the Syrian airspace on Thursday.

The Iranian organization urged the ICAO to immediately address the move, which is “a clear violation of the international law and the aviation standards and regulations.”

Iranian Vice-President for Legal Affairs Laya Joneidi also said on Friday that the harassment of a passenger plane in a third country is a blatant violation of aviation security, a breach of the freedom of the air for civil flights, and contradicts the Article 3 and Article 44 of the Chicago Convention as well as the 1971 Montreal Convention.

Joneidi said the US government is responsible for the fighter jets’ dangerous maneuvering, and Iran can legally pursue the issue at the ICAO Council and the International Court of Justice.

Iran’s Minister of Roads and Urban Development Mohammad Eslami described the US air piracy as an “act of terrorism”, urging the international community to condemn the “poisonous” move.

“Our passenger plane was moving at the international commercial flight route and corridor, and the American fighter jets’ threatening move was unlawful and inhumane,” he added.

He also called on the governments of Lebanon and Syria to file a complaint against Washington at the International Civil Aviation Organization.

“The ICAO is also expected to issue a statement against this inhumane move by the US,” the Iranian minister said.

US warplanes in aggressive maneuvering near Iranian airliner: Reports
US warplanes in aggressive maneuvering near Iranian airliner: ReportsUS warplanes conduct some “dangerous” maneuvering close to a Beirut-bound Iranian airliner over the Syrian capital Damascus, injuring some of the passengers.

On Thursday night, US warplanes operating illegally in Syria conducted some aggressive and “dangerous” maneuvering close to the Mahan Air flight in an act of air piracy.

Mahan Air’s Flight 1152 had taken off from Tehran and was en route to the Lebanese capital when the incident happened over Syria’s hugely-strategic al-Tanf region.

In response, the US Central Command said a single F-15 had made a “visual inspection” of the Iranian airliner “in accordance with international standards… to ensure the safety of coalition personnel” at the military base in al-Tanf.

The command added that the US F-15 was on a “routine air mission” in Syria and conducted “a standard visual inspection of a Mahan Air passenger airliner at a safe distance of approximately 1,000 meters”.

“Once the F-15 pilot identified the aircraft as a Mahan Air passenger plane, the F-15 safely opened distance from the aircraft.”

Forgoing any permission from Damascus, the US has been operating in the Arab country since 2014 under the pretext of fighting the Daesh terrorist group. The US, however, continues its occupation even as Syria defeated the Takfiri terrorists in late 2017.


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Iran’s top security official: Harsher revenge awaits perpetrators of Gen. Soleimani’s assassination

Source

Wednesday, 22 July 2020 4:29 PM 

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
Members of the Iraqi honor guard walk past a huge portrait of Iran’s late top general Qassem Soleimani (L) and Iraqi commander Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, both killed in a US drone strike near Baghdad airport last month, during a memorial service held in Baghdad’s high-security Green Zone on February 11, 2020. (Photo by AFP)

Iran’s top security official says harsher revenge awaits the perpetrators of the attack that killed senior Iranian anti-terrorism commander Lieutenant General Qassem Soleimani and his companions.

In a post on his Twitter page on Wednesday, Secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council Ali Shamkhani said that US President Donald Trump had admitted that the American, upon his direct order, committed the crime of assassinating General Soleimani, the commander of the Quds Force of Iran’s Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC), andAbu Mahdi al-Muhandis, the second-in-command of Iraq’s Popular Mobilization Units (PMU) counter-terrorism force, who were two prominent figures of the anti-terrorism campaign.  

“The two Iranian and Iraqi nations are avengers of blood of these martyrsand will not rest until they punish the perpetrators,” read part of the tweet.

“Harsher revenge is one the way,” it concluded.

The two commanders and a number of their companions were assassinated in a US airstrike near Baghdad airport on January 3, as General Soleimani was on an official visit to the Iraqi capital.

Both commanders were extremely popular because of the key role they played in eliminating the US-sponsored Daesh terrorist group in the region, particularly in Iraq and Syria.UN experts calls US drone attack on Gen. Soleimani ‘unlawful’ killingA senior UN human rights investigator says the United States’ assassination of top Iranian commander Lieutenant General Qassem Soleimani in Baghdad was an “unlawful” killing in violation of the international law.

In retaliation for the attack, the IRGC fired volleys of ballistic missiles a US base in Iraq on January 8. According to the US Defense Department, more than 100 American forces suffered “traumatic brain injuries” during the counterstrike. The IRGC, however, says Washington uses the term to mask the number of the Americans, who perished during the retaliation.

Iran has also issued an arrest warrant and asked Interpol for help in detaining Trump, who ordered the assassination, and several other US military and political leaders behind the strike.

Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei said on Tuesday Iran will never forget Washington’s assassination of General Soleimani and will definitely deliver a “counterblow” to the United States.Leader: Iran to deal US ‘counterblow’ for Gen. Soleimani’s assassinationLeader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei meets with visiting Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi in Tehran.

“The Islamic Republic of Iran will never forget this issue and will definitely deal the counterblow to the Americans,” Ayatollah Khamenei said in a meeting with visiting Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi in Tehran.

“They killed your guest at your own home and unequivocally admitted the atrocity. This is no small matter,” Ayatollah Khamenei told the Iraqi premier.

A UN special rapporteur sayshas condemned the US assassination and said Washington has put the world at unprecedented peril with its murder of Iran’s top anti-terror commander.UN expert raps US for arbitrary drone attack that killed Gen. SoleimaniA UN special rapporteur slams the US for refusing to take responsibility for the assassination of General Soleimani in violation of international law.

Agnes Callamard, UN special rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions, has also warned that it is high time the international community broke its silence on Washington’s drone-powered unlawful killings.


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Tehran, Baghdad Will Sue US for Assassinating General Soleimani, Hajj Abu Mahdi

Tehran, Baghdad Will Sue US for Assassinating General Soleimani, Hajj Abu Mahdi

By Staff, Agencies

Iraq announced that Baghdad and Tehran will jointly sue the US for assassinating top Iranian commander Lieutenant General Qassem Soleimani and deputy head of Iraq’s Popular Mobilization Units, Hajj Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis.

In a statement on Monday, Iraq’s Supreme Judicial Council said the country regards the US assassination of General Soleimani and Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis on its soil as a criminal act.

The Council said it has coordinated its legal procedure with the Iranian Judiciary and the two countries will file a joint lawsuit against the US.

“The investigation into the airport incident began from the first moment and the Iraqi judiciary dealt with that incident as a criminal act that took place on Iraqi land where some of the victims are Iraqis,” the council said in a statement.

The investigation took place according to the Iraqi Code of Criminal Procedure starting with inspecting the scene and meeting with some of the plaintiffs, including the legal representative of the Iranian embassy, the statement added.

“The Iraqi Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Secretariat of the Council of Ministers had been informed of other details regarding the accident, and that the investigation procedures since the time of the accident continue in accordance with the Iraqi law,” the statement added.

The Iraqi Judiciary’s statement comes a day after Iranian Foreign Minister Mohamad Javad Zarif met with Iraqi officials, including the head of the Supreme Judicial Council, in Baghdad.

The statement was also released ahead of Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi’s Tuesday trip to Tehran, where he is to hold high-level talks with Iranian officials.

A US drone attack, commanded by US President Donald Trump, killed General Soleimani and al-Muhandis near Baghdad International Airport on January 3, prompting international condemnations.

في وجه الحرب الأمنيّة: الردّ هو الصمود…

د. عصام نعمان

ليس سراً ان الولايات المتحدة، بضغط من «إسرائيل»، تشنّ حرباً أمنية ضد الأعداء والخصوم على امتداد غرب آسيا، من شواطئ البحر الابيض المتوسط غرباً الى شواطئ بحر قزوين شرقاً. يُقصد بالحرب الأمنية مجموعة هجمات متكاملة قوامها عمليات استخبارية، وعقوبات اقتصادية، وصدامات أهلية، وصراعات مذهبية، وتفجيرات وحرائق تستهدف مرافق عامة حيوية وموجودات عالية القيمة والأهمية.

أشدّ هجمات الحرب الأمنية الأميركية قسوة تركّزت في إيران، تليها عدداً وأهمية تلك التي تستهدف لبنان بما هو منطلق لحزب الله. في إيران استهدفت الهجمات الاميركية مواقع لها صلة ببرنامجها النووي (موقع نطنز) وبالقوة البحرية (مرفأ بوشهر) وغيرها من المواقع والمرافق الحيوية. لوحظ في كل هذه الهجمات ان للسلاح السيبراني دوراً وازناً فيها.

إيران أعلنت عزمها على الردّ اذا ما ثبت لديها ان لأميركا و«إسرائيل» صلة بهذه الهجمات. خبير عسكري مقرّب من أحد أطراف محور المقاومة أكدّ أنّ إيران باشرت فعلاً الردّ على الهجمات الأميركية. ذكّر محاوريه بأنه سبق لـِ «إسرائيل» أن اتهمت إيران قبل أقلّ من شهر بأنها استعملت وسائل سيبرانية في هجومها على شبكات المياه في قلب الكيان.

ثانية الساحات استهدافاً من الولايات المتحدة هي لبنان. هنا الاستهداف يعتمد وسائل وتدابير اقتصادية، ويضاعف ضغوطه السياسية ويستغلّ بلا هوادة الصراعات السياسية والطائفية بين اللاعبين المحليين، كما المشاكل الاقتصادية والمالية التي تعانيها البلاد.

كثيرة هي التحديات التي تواجه اللبنانيين، مسؤولين ومواطنين. غير أنّ أشدّها ضراوة وخطراً ثلاثة: الانهيار الماليّ والاقتصاديّ، والحكم المزمع صدوره عن المحكمة الخاصة بلبنان في لاهاي في 7 آب/ أغسطس المقبل بحق المتهمين باغتيال رئيس الوزراء الراحل رفيق الحريري، وقرار مجلس الأمن الدولي المزمع صدوره أواخرَ الشهر المقبل بصدد تجديد مهمة قوات الأمم المتحدة «يونيفيل» (أو تعديلها) التي تقوم بمراقبة وقف إطلاق النار بين لبنان و«إسرائيل» وفقاً لأحكام القرار الأممي 1701.

حيال تحدي الانهيار المالي والاقتصادي، تباشر واشنطن ضغوطاً شديدة على طرفين محليين من جهة، ومن جهة أخرى على صندوق النقد الدولي لحمله على إحباط أمل الحكومة اللبنانية بالحصول منه على دعم مالي وازن. كما تضغط على الحكومة والقوى التي تساندها للتصرف بمعزل عن حزب الله الذي يشارك فيها بوزير للصحة العامة وآخر للصناعة، وتضغط على القوى السياسية، لا سيما المعارضة منها، للمطالبة بتحييد لبنان إزاء الصراعات الإقليمية والدولية وصولاً الى تجريد حزب الله، أي المقاومة، من السلاح أو إبعاده في الأقلّ عن ايّ صيغة حكومية حاضراً ومستقبلاً.

إذ تبدي قوى المعارضة السياسية وخصوم حزب الله تأييداً فاقعاً لشعار تحييد لبنان وتستظل البطريرك الماروني بشارة الراعي كرأس حربة في الضغط سياسياً وشعبياً لتحقيقه، يرفض الرئيسان ميشال عون وحسان دياب والقوى السياسية الداعمة لهما ولحزب الله المساس بسلاح المقاومة بما هو ضمانة لحماية لبنان من الاعتداءات الإسرائيلية المتواصلة. وعلى كلّ حال لا يشكّل تحييد لبنان تحدّياً راهناً طالما أنّ البطريرك الراعي قال أخيراً إنه لا يصحّ إلا بوجود دولة قوية وعادلة، وهو أمر غير متوافر حالياً.

الحكم المنتظر صدوره عن المحكمة الخاصة بلبنان في قضية اغتيال رفيق الحريري يبدو أكثر حساسية وخطورة لكونه سيُستخدم أداةً للتعبئة الطائفيّة، لا سيما في أوساط أهل السنّة والجماعة، سواء قضى بتجريم المتهمين او بتبرئتهم. وفي هذه الحالة فإنّ الهدف المرشح دائماً للتصويب عليه هو حزب الله الذي يأمل خصومه بإضعافه وحمل حلفائه تالياً على التخلي عنه وإبعاده عن الحكومة. المقول إنّ حزب الله لن يكترث لحكم المحكمة الخاصة أياً كان مضمونه، وإنّ حلفاءه لن يتخلوا عنه لأن لا مصلحة لهم في ذلك.

التحدي الناجم عن قرار مجلس الأمن المنتظر بشأن تجديد مهمة قوات «اليونيفيل» العاملة في جنوب لبنان لا يقلّ حساسية وخطورة عن التحديين سالفيْ الذكر. ذلك أن أميركا، بضغط متواصل من «إسرائيل»، تريد تعديل مضمون مهمة القوات الأممية لتتيح لها مراقبة ً أفعل لحزب الله وذلك بدخول منازل الأهلين من دون ان ترافقها وحدات من الجيش اللبناني، وبإقامة أبراج مراقبة وتجهيزها بوسائل سيبرانية لتمكينها من توسيع مراقبتها لتحركات أنصار حزب الله، كما بتوسيع نطاق مهمتها بحيث تشمل الحدود بين لبنان وسورية ايضاً.

لبنان، على ما يبدو، استحصل على ضمانات من روسيا والصين برفض محاولات أميركا تعديل مهمة «اليونيفيل» من جهة، ومن جهة أخرى لا يبدو حزب الله مكترثاً بكل محاولات أميركا على هذا الصعيد حتى لو أدى الأمر الى إنهاء مهمة «اليونيفيل» لكونها، اولاً وآخراً، مبرمجة لخدمة «إسرائيل».

اذ تشتدّ وطأة التحديات والأزمات والضغوط السياسية والاقتصادية والأمنية على خصوم الولايات المتحدة في غرب آسيا، لا سيما أطراف محور المقاومة، ينهض سؤال: ما العمل؟

يقول مسؤولون في دول محور المقاومة، كما خبراء مقرّبون منهم إنّ الولايات المتحدة لن تخفف البتة من وطأة حربها الأمنية على أطراف المحور المذكور قبل حلول موعد الانتخابات الرئاسية الأميركية في مطلع تشرين الثاني/ نوفمبر المقبل. إنها مرحلة انتقالية حساسة لا تسمح للرئيس ترامب، المنشغل بطموح ملتهب لتجديد ولايته في ظروف داخلية غير مؤاتية له، بالإقدام على أيّ عمل غير مأمون العواقب لئلا ينعكس سلباً على وضعه الانتخابي. كما لا تسمح الظروف الدقيقة نفسها لأطراف محور المقاومة بالردّ على أميركا و«إسرائيل» بعمليات قاسية لئلا تؤدي تداعياتها الى خدمة كلٍّ من ترامب ونتنياهو المستميتين للبقاء في السلطة.

الصمود في المواقف، والصمود في أساليب الردّ بالمثل على الأعداء هو الجواب الأجدى والأفعل في المرحلة الانتقالية.

هل من خيار آخر…؟

*نائب ووزير سابق.

Trump Exploits the Suffering of Thousands of Syrian Refugees in Rukban Camp

Source

July 18, 2020 Arabi Souri

US Exploits the Suffering of Thousands of Syrian Civilians Held in Rukban Concentration Camp
US Exploits the Suffering of Thousands of Syrian Civilians Held in Rukban Concentration Camp

The infamous Rukban Concentration Camp continues to hold up to ten thousand Syrian civilians living in inhumane conditions, by all standards, and the regime of Donald Trump refuses to allow the families to go back to their homes or allow proper flow of humanitarian aid into the camp, similarly to what the US-led a hysteric campaign against Syria, China, and Russia, for al-Qaeda in Idlib.

Where are the Western criers for humanity when one needs them? Over months, the hypocrite representatives of NATO member states at the United Nations Security Council were pressuring to allow new crossings into Al-Qaeda controlled areas in Idlib, despite that their territories have shrunk considerably. But we see no action, at all, by the same NATO representatives when there is real horrific suffering of thousands of Syrian civilians held hostage by a US military base and two terrorist groups affiliated with ISIS in the depth of the Syrian desert at the border crossings with Iraq and Jordan.

The following report by Muhammad Al-Khader of the Lebanese-based Al Mayadeen news channel sheds further light on the issue:



The video report is also available on BitChute.


Transcript of the English translation of the above video report:
Thousands of displaced Syrians in Rukban camp on the Jordanian border have become a tool of American for pressure on Damascus, the suffering of the camp’s residents, estimated to number more than 10,000 civilians, is getting worse every day.
A harsh reality exploited by the American base in Al-Tanf in the face of the Syrian and Russian demands to tackle the camp file, refusing to open safe corridors that allow entry of Syrian relief and health convoys or even the exit of civilians to their homes in Tadmor (Palmyra), the Badia (plain desert) of Homs, and in Deir Al-Zour.
A number of the (US-sponsored) Maghawir Thawra militants who recently fell in the grip of the Syrian security units revealed even more.
They talked about imposing the American base through its agents in the Maghawir Thawra faction and the Ahrar Asha’ir on the males to join the two factions in order to obtain money and always depend on the American decision.
Osama Danoura – writer and political analyst: This aid is distributed only in a way that causes the citizens there who are detained in Rukban to become militia workers for these terrorist organizations, and it (the USA) has practically replaced the influence of ISIS in the region with the influence of these terrorist groups created by it.
A confession that provides further evidence of American involvement in keeping the camp file open, Russian and Syrian efforts have succeeded over three years in evacuating about 20,000 civilians from the camp’s residents to their areas, and by cooperating with international agencies, they have managed to bring aid convoys into the camp.
The US hold of the Rukban camp file and obstructing its return to the Syrian government provide an excuse to justify the illegal US presence in al-Tanf, and more importantly, it turns it into a blackmail and pressure paper on Damascus, which has achieved an important recovery in the south file.
End of the English transcript.
Every person can help these innocent people, you can help right now by sharing this post with your friends, asking your ‘democratically-elected’ supposed to be officials and representatives in your country about the actions to this issue just like how they spent your tax money and their time you pay for on supporting al-Qaeda and other terrorist groups.
Read also:

Zarif visits Baghdad, says plans to discuss Gen. Soleimani assassination with Iraqi officials

Source

TEHRAN – Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif who arrived in Baghdad on Sunday morning told reporters at Baghdad’s airport that he plans to discuss the issue of the assassination of Gen. Qassem Soleimani with Iraqi officials.

General Soleimani, who was internationally known for his legendary commandership in the fight against Daesh – also called ISIS or ISIL -, was assassinated in a terrorist attack by the United States near Baghdad’s international airport on January 3. The terrorist attack was conducted upon direct order by Donald Trump.
He was assassinated along with Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, the deputy commander of the Iraqi Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF). 
Upon his arrival in Baghdad, Zarif visited the site of the terrorist attack to commemorate the memory of the two commanders.

PA/PA

Related

The Muslim Holocaust

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Holocaust is a word that Zionist propagandists have reserved for Jewish experience. However, in a new book, US-Imposed Post-9/11 Muslim Holocaust & Muslim Genocide (Korsgaard Publishing, 2020), Dr. Gideon Polya documents that three to four times more Muslims have been killed by Washington’s 21st century wars than there are Jews in Israel. Polya concludes that Washington’s holocaust of Muslims is a multiple of the claimed Jewish holocaust number of 6 million.

The cost in dollars to the United States of the gratuitous murder of 32 million Muslims is in the many trillions along with thousands of dead and maimed US soldiers and 88,000 US veteran suicides since September 11, 2001. Americans have paid dearly for the hoax “war on terror” imposed on them by lies and deception.

Polya acquaints the reader with a number of holocausts: the Bengali holocaust, Somali holocaust, opiate holocaust, and the Yemeni, Palestinian, Rohingya and other genocides. In Chapter 20 Polya speaks of the American Holocaust, which consists of untimely and unnecessary American deaths from the diversion of billions of dollars from American needs to Israel.

The book is full of factual information and is heavily documented.

There are so many unacknowledged crimes of state of horrific proportion that receive no public attention that the fake news story of George Floyd’s “murder by racist white police” is difficult to comprehend. Floyd died of an overdose of the dangerous opioid Fentanyl, as the toxicology report shows. If Polya’s book has a second edition, Chapter 22, War on Truth, deserves a section on how the fake news about Floyd’s death caused billions of dollars in US property damage and irreparably harmed racial relations in the US. Indeed, in my estimation, the property damage caused by the media’s lies exceed the combined value of the media companies.

Polya’s book can be purchased here: Korsgaard Publishing and here: Amazon


By Paul Craig Roberts
Source: Paul Craig Roberts Institute for Political Economy

أن يهرب المجرم الأميركي ماكينزي… فهذا يعني أنهم مهزومون

 د. جمال شهاب المحسن

أن يهرب ائد المنطقة المركزية الوسطى في الجيش الأميركي الجنرال ماكينزي بطوافة عسكرية من مطار بيروت الدولي فهذا فيه الكثير الكثير من الدلالات وأهمّها أنّ الأميركيين مهزومون ويجرّون أذيال الخيبة والفشل في لبنان والمنطقة أمام صلابة وانتصارات محور المقاومة…

ولمَن لا يعرف فإنّ هذا الموقع هو موقع لأهمّ مسؤول عسكري ميداني في الجيش الأميركي في الحروب التي خاضتها وشنّتها وحرّكتها الولايات المتحدة الأميركية على امتداد العالم… وبالمناسبة فإنّ أسلاف ماكينزي كان لهم دورٌ كبير في الحرب الإرهابية العالمية التي تُشنّ على سورية وقيادتها وجيشها وشعبها ودورها المحوري في المنطقة منذ أكثر من تسع سنوات… حيث كانوا «يجتمعون” مع بعض كبار المسؤولين في لبنان «وعينهم على سورية” فيشغّلون مَن يشغّلون في حربهم الفاشلة التي استخدموا فيها كلّ إمكانياتهم وقذاراتهم..

وكم كان ماكينزي وقحاً عندما قال في زيارته «اللبنانية” إنّ «لبنان شريك مهمّ للولايات المتحدة وسنستمرّ في دعم الجيش اللبناني بصفته الممثل المسلح الوحيد لحكومة لبنان… وأنّ لدى «إسرائيل” مصالح أمنية مشروعة ونتطلع الى اليوم الذي لا يكون فيه أيّ تهديد ضدّها ينطلق من جيرانها”.

على المكشوف فإنّ ماكينزي وغيره من المجرمين الأميركيين لا يُخفون أعمالهم وتآمرهم وخططهم العاملة ليل نهار لمصلحة الكيان الصهيوني الغاصب حيث لم يعد الدبلوماسيون منهم يتخفّون وراء ستار من الخطاب «الدبلوماسي المتحفِّظ” إعلامياً وشكلياً ليُخفوا أعمالهم القذرة، وها هو بومبيو وشينكر والسفيرة الأميركية في عوكر يتدخلون في شؤون لبنان الداخلية ويصرّحون بوقاحة ضدّ حزب لبناني كبير هو حزب الله، وضدّ مقاومتنا البطلة التي سجّلت في مثل هذه الأيام من تموز _ آب عام 2006 أروع الإنتصارات على العدو الصهيوني المدعوم أميركياً..

المجرمون الأميركيون يعملون بوضوح في استهداف حزب الله من خلال الأحداث اللبنانية، ولا تعنيهم سوى بالاستخدام والتوظيف

«الإصلاحات ومحاربة الفساد ومصلحة لبنان” في شيء وإنما تعنيهم في الأساس والجوهر مصالحهم ومصالح «إسرائيل» فقط عبر استهداف حزب الله الذي بات يمثّل خطراً وجودياً على الكيان الصهيوني المجرم…

وعلى الرغم من الأبواق المأجورة عبر بعض وسائل الإعلام المسخّرة من طرف الإنتهازيين والعملاء الذين يتستّرون وراء قناع «النضال والثورة” لأجل تنفيذ أهدافهم الخاصة وأهداف مشغِّليهم، حيثُ أن «القوة الناعمة” الأميركية تدخّلت كثيراً وانكشفت في التضليل الإعلامي والتلاعب بعقول الناس وركوب الموجات الجماهيرية والقضايا المطلبية المحقة والمشروعة، فيتأكد في كلّ لحظة من نهارٍ أو ليل ما قاله السفير الروسي في لبنان ألكسندر زاسبيكين قبل اندلاع الحريق والإنفجار الشعبي الكبير في لبنان حين أكد أنّ الأميركيين يهيّئون لفوضى في لبنان، وقال حرفياً: إنّ ما يحصل في لبنان على صعيد أزمة العملة الأجنبية المستجدة هو بسبب «الخطّة الأميركية لإحداث الفوضى في لبنان”.

وأضاف: إنّ «الفوضى كما يريدها الأميركيون هدفها ضرب حزب الله في لبنان ومِن خلفه خصوم أميركا في المنطقة”، وتابع: «إنّ مجموعة العمل لأجل لبنان والمُشَكَّلة من سفراء الدول الخمس الكبرى كانت دائماً تضع في بندها الأول مبدأ الحفاظ على الاستقرار الداخلي والوضع الأمني، لكنني مؤخّراً بتُّ أشعر أنّ الأميركيين يُهملون هذا المبدأ في خطّتهم التي توصِلُ إلى انهيار الوضع الاقتصادي وحصول غليان شعبي، وهم بذلك يهدّدون استقرار لبنان في حربهم لتطويع خصوم أميركا بدل الحفاظ على هذا البلد وحمايته”.

وسأل زاسبيكين: «ما هي الجهة الوحيدة التي ستحافظ على تماسكها في حال الانهيار الاقتصادي وانهيار الدولة؟ ثمّ أجاب بنفسه قائلاً: إنه «حزب الله”…

وليس دفاعاً عن الفاسدين في السلطة اللبنانية الذين يجب أن يُحاسَبوا وأن تُسترجعَ الأموالُ التي نهبوها من الشعب اللبناني، هناك ملفات وقضايا ستُفتح للذين يركِبون الموجة ويحاضِرون بالعفّة وهم «ما هم عليه” من عمالة وإجرام وفساد كبير يغطّونه من خلال محطات تلفزيونية فضائية يدّعي أصحابُها اليوم أنهم «ثوريون” وهم في حالة التُّخمة من جرّاء التمويل الخارجي والصفقات الداخلية والخارجية القذرة، حيث يتحدّثون في كلّ شيء ولكنهم «مؤدّبون” أمام حاكم مصرف لبنان الذي يعمل منذ فترة طويلة من الزمن لصالح الأميركيين لأنهم من طينته وعلى نفس المستوى بالعمالة والفساد والإفساد.

وهنا أجدّد التأكيد أننا نحن الثوّار ولآخر مدى ولن يستطيعَ شُذّاذُ الآفاق من خلال محاولات «الإحتلال المدني” سرقة نضالاتنا وأغانينا وثورتنا الحقيقية لمصلحة «ثورات الفوضى الأميركية” المدمِّرة كما جرى في العديد من بلدان المنطقة والعالم.

وأصِلُ الى بيت القصيد لأقول: إنه وعلى طريقة التخلّص من حسني مبارك وبن علي والبشير فإنّ «مركز اللعب” بالمخابرات الأميركية يعمل بجدية من خلال «الحرائق المشتعلة” على التخلّص من قيادات سياسية حاكمة وإحلال قيادات جديدة تدّعي أنها «حيادية” للوصول الى هدفها السرّي والعلني ألا وهو «القضاء” على حزب الله اللبناني المقاوم… وهذا مستحيلٌ لأن هذا الحزب متجذّرٌ في أرضنا الوطنية الطيبة ولأنّ قائده وعدنا دائماً بالانتصارات المحقّقة بإذن الله.

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*إعلامي وباحث في علم الإجتماع السياسي

ماذا عن حياد يستثني كيان الاحتلال؟ What About neutrality that excludes the entity of occupation

ناصر قنديل

لا نريد ن هذه المقالة إصدار أحكام ولا توجيه اتهامات، بل نريد مناقشة الفرضيّة التي ألحق بها البطريرك بشارة الراعي دعوته لإعلان حياد لبنان، وتطبيق القرارات الدولية واستعادة لبنان دعم أصدقائه، كما ورد في عظته المخصصة للحياد. والفرضية الملحقة تقول إن الدعوة للحياد تستثني كيان الاحتلال، ليصير السؤال البديهي عقلياً عن إمكانية حياد يستثني كيان الاحتلال، وما هي مترتبات هذا الاستثناء على دعوة الحياد نفسها، وفرصها في التحقق، بعيداً عن مناقشة تنحو باتجاه التساؤل والنقاش في جوهر فكرة الحياد، ومعانيها ودرجة صدقيتها، وفي سؤالنا عن إمكانية حياد يستثني كيان الاحتلال سنتناول فقط ثلاثة عناوين من عديد منها يشبهها.

العنوان الأول هو أن لبنان يتعرّض يومياً لانتهاكات لسيادته من جانب جيش كيان الاحتلال، خصوصاً على صعيد مواصلة طائرات جيش الاحتلال استعمال الأجواء اللبنانية للتجسس والأعمال العدوانية، والانتهاكات الموثقة وفقاً للجيش اللبناني بالآلاف سنوياً، فهل يمكن للحياد أن يوفر مظلة حماية للبنان من هذه الانتهاكات، التي تحظى بحماية قانونية توفرها واشنطن في كل المحافل الدولية. وقد لمست الدبلوماسية اللبنانية حسياً، كيف أن كل شكوى تتقدم بها إلى مجلس الأمن الدولي يتم تعطيل فرصها بالتحول إلى القرار والإدانة على مدى ثلاثة أرباع القرن، وأحياناً يتعذر نيل فرص العرض والنقاش، بقرار أميركي لا يتردد بالتحول إلى فيتو عندما يبدو أن المناخ الدولي يتّجه للتضامن مع مظلومية لبنان، فهل يمكن لحياد على الطريقة السويسرية التي أشار إليها البطريرك كمثال، أن يتضمن تزويد الجيش اللبناني بدفاعات جوية تمنع طيران جيش الاحتلال من دخول أجوائنا السيادية؟ وهل أصدقاء لبنان الذين قصدهم البطريرك في دعوته مستعدون لتزويد الجيش بهذه الدفاعات، وإن لم يفعلوا هل تتيح دعوة البطريرك فرصة طلب هذا النوع من السلاح من غير هؤلاء الأصدقاء دون اعتبار ذلك عزلاً للبنان عن أصدقائه، وعن المجتمع الدولي؟

العنوان الثاني، إن للبنان قضية جوهرية وطنية ودستورية مطروحة اليوم على الطاولة، تتصل بالسياسات الدولية، خصوصاً الآتية من الذين قصدهم البطريرك بالإشارة لأصدقاء لبنان، فمشروع حل القضية الفلسطينية وفقاً للرؤية الأميركية معلن ويتضمن تجاهلاً لعودة اللاجئين، ودعوة لتوطينهم، ولبنان موحّد على إجماعه نظرياً برفض التوطين والتمسك برفض أي حل للقضية الفلسطينية يتضمن التوطين، وليس خافياً أن جزءاً أساسياً من الضغوط الاقتصادية التي يتعرّض لها لبنان، يتصل بمحاولة إضعافه لمساومته على مقايضة التوطين بالدعم المالي لتخطي أزماته، واستثناء كيان الاحتلال من دعوة الحياد يفترض أن يشمل استثناء حق لبنان بمواجهة مشاريع التوطين، والإدارة الأميركية هي المعني الرئيسي بهذه المواجهة، لأنها صاحبة مشروع صفقة القرن علناً، فهل تشكل دعوات الصمود بوجه الضغوط الأميركية، والتمسك بعناصر القوة التي تحول دون هذه الضغوط، تطبيقاً لمضمون استثناء كيان الاحتلال من دعوة الحياد التي أطلقها البطريرك، وبالتالي لا تشملها الاتهامات بعزل لبنان، ولا بحصار الشرعية فيه؟

العنوان الثالث، إن الضغوط الراهنة المالية والاقتصادية، والتي وصفتها دعوة الحياد قبل الاستثناء، بنتاج لعزل لبنان عن أصدقائه، فما هو موضوع هذه الضغوط وفقاً لأصحابها، وقد تحدث كل من وزير الخارجية الأميركية مايك بومبيو ومعاونه ديفيد شينكر عنها، فقال الأول إن امتلاك حزب الله للصواريخ الدقيقة يهدد مستقبل وأمن كيان الاحتلال، المستثنى من دعوة الحياد كما يقول التوضيح، والضغط يهدف لتأمين راحة الكيان من القلق الذي تسببه هذه الصواريخ، أما معاون الوزير ديفيد شينكر فقد تناول الوضع المالي الضاغط على لبنان وقال بصورة لا تحتمل التأويل، إنه بموازاة معاناة اللبنانيين هناك ثروات واعدة في البحر في مجال النفط والغاز هي موضوع نزاع مع كيان الاحتلال، وأن واشنطن قدّمت للبنان تصوراً لحل هذا النزاع، والمطلوب من اللبنانيين قبول هذا التصور، ليتخلصوا من هذه المعاناة، فهل يشمل استثناء كيان الاحتلال من الحياد، دعم تمسك لبنان بحقوقه السيادية في ثرواته البحرية التي يهدرها السيد شينكر بالتصور الذي يدعونا لقبوله؟

في الخلاصة يجب الاعتراف أن لا مشكلة فعلية بين لبنان والسياسات الأميركية التي تفسر العزلة التي يشكو منها البطريرك، إلا تلك التي ترتبط بكيان الاحتلال، من قضية التوطين إلى الانتهاكات التي تمس السيادة اللبنانية وصواريخ المقاومة وترسيم الحدود البحرية، فإن تمسكنا باستثناء كيان الاحتلال من دعوة الحياد كوصفة لفك العزلة التي تحدث عنها البطريرك، سيسقط الحياد وتبقى العزلة. وإذا ذهبنا حتى النهاية في الحياد وفك العزلة وتغاضينا عن مطالبنا السيادية التي يشكل التصادم مع مشاريع كيان الاحتلال جوهرها، فعلينا المجاهرة بقبول التوطين، وتسليم أجوائنا وصواريخ مقاومتنا لكيان الاحتلال ليطمئن ويرضى «الأصدقاء» ونقبل ترسيم حدودنا البحرية بما يحقق سيطرة الكيان على ثرواتنا الواعدة فيها، فماذا نختار بين الحياد والاستثناء، وقد صارا وجهاً لوجه، يصعب الجمع بينهما؟

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