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33 years after Sabra-Shatila, Takfiri plans for "Intifada!" waft in Lebanon's camps

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33 years after Sabra-Shatila, Takfiri plans for "Intifada!" waft in Lebanon's camps

Franklin Lamb

Ein al Helwe Palestinian camp, Lebanon

"Palestinians have no reliable friends Abu Ammar! This summer proved it! Where are the worthless Arabs? Only some foreign implanted "Resistance" elements that for their own hegemonic political purposes want to play the Palestinian card and wear your keffiyeh and pose for photos making the V for Victory sign! This disgusts me Abu Ammar! Palestinians must rely only on themselves. The PLO must return to "Revolution until Victory!" You should postpone your exit from Lebanon and you must protect the camps. Without the gun to protect them what does Reagan's 'olive branch' of "we will give you back most of Palestine if you leave Beirut" convey? Nothing worth anything in my opinion"!

Thus was the plea to PLO leader Yassir Arafat, made 33 years ago by a distraught and prescient American journalist and Palestinian advocate from Atlanta, Georgia named Janet Lee Stevens. At the time she was four floors underground in Arafat's Fakhani South Beirut bunker across from Arab University. She and her colleagues were secure from American bombs that rained down 12 hours that day from Zionist aggressors as she made her case.

The Palestinian leadership was preparing to "flee" Lebanon, (Janet's word for the planned PLO "evacuation with dignity") Janet emphatically opposed the PLO departure from Lebanon in the summer of 1982 insisting that it would allow a reign of terror against the hundreds of thousands of Palestinians who had no option but to remain behind, deeply mired in the camps.

Janet's appeal was made in the presence of this observer and the late Imad Mughniyeh, 19 years old at the time, and a few others who likely agreed with her analysis. Mughniyeh had joined the Palestine revolution at the age of 14, and according to author Kai Bird may had received military training from the CIA as part of a US initiative to "Professionalize" Arafat's security unit. He had been given a job two years earlier with the PLO Force 17 whose mandate included a unit of Arafat bodyguards. After 1982, and disillusioned with the PLO Imad affiliated with the pre-Hezbollah Islamic Amal.

Like dozens of others, Mughniyeh owed his job to his friend and mentor, the PLO's Red Prince" Ali Hassan Salameh who was assassinated on his way to his nieces' birthday party at 4 p.m. on January 24, 1979 on Beka Street in the Verdun neighborhood of Beirut.

A German woman, Erika Chambers, posing as an artist and pro-Palestinian activist, but in reality a Mossad agent now living in Israel on a handsome US funded Mossad pension, watched Salameh's car as it passed under her 8th floor balcony, pushed a button and detonated a parked explosive-rigged Volkswagen Beetle.

Janet's words to PLO Chairman Arafat were prophetic and are as true today as when she spoke them eight months before her death on April 18, 1983.

It's not a pretty picture in Lebanon's Palestinian camps this week as foreigners arrive in solidarity, as many do annually; to pay tribute to the more than 3000 victims of the September 1982 Israeli facilitated Sabra-Shatila Massacre.

This past year the Syrian crisis has exported to Lebanon enormous unforeseen demographic and economic pressures on Lebanon and on each of the dozen Palestinian camps and nearly two dozen "gatherings." Recent UN and EU studies document what virtually all quality-of-life social-economic indexes make plain which is that the approximate quarter million Palestinians actually living in Lebanon are continuing to sink ever deeper into a dark abyss.

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Since 2013, Professor Franklin P. Lamb has traveled extensively throughout Syria. His primary focus has been to document, photograph, research and hopefully help preserve the vast and irreplaceable archaeological sites and artifacts in (more...)

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