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OpEdNews Op Eds    H2'ed 11/14/17

Western Intelligence: Saad Hariri resigned to avoid his father's fate and salvage Lebanon

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Secretary Tillerson and Lebanese Prime Minister Hariri Prepare to Address Reporters Before Their Meeting in Washington
Secretary Tillerson and Lebanese Prime Minister Hariri Prepare to Address Reporters Before Their Meeting in Washington
(Image by U.S. Department of State)
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Last week's resignation of Lebanon's popular Prime Minister Saad Hariri has fueled a plethora of politically inspired conspiracy theories.

At the forefront are some of Iran's several Lebanese proxies who immediately in knee-jerk fashion, accused Saudi Arabia of holding Hariri hostage, and they demanded the PM's return to Lebanon. For what purpose is still not clear. Many in Lebanon believe it to give his stalkers time to organized Hariri's assassination.

Lebanon's virulently anti-Palestinian President Michel Aoun (who has sworn that if he is President, Palestinians in Lebanon will never be allowed the elementary civil right to work) was handpicked and put into his position by Hezbollah after a 19-month Presidential vacancy, immediately demanded to know why PM Hariri did not inform him in advance. And, Aoun added, why were not Lebanon's Internal Security Force (ISF), or Lebanon's army, Parliament and airport officials not told of Hariri's plans, destination and schedule.

Beirut and Washington DC sources have suggested to this observer that Hariri's thinking and motivation for a quick departure from Lebanon was influenced by reports delivered to him personally from three Western security agencies who have for the past six months been monitoring the movements of certain security agents from Hezbollah. These elements, it is claimed have been using 'secured' mobile phones while stalking Hariri since his appointment as PM one year ago much as was done to shadow his father Rafik, twelve years ago. The intelligence agencies are said to believe, as do most Lebanese, including a majority of Shia, that the Hezbollah members, currently being tried in absentia before the Special Tribunal for Lebanon (STL) in The Hague blew up Saad's father and 21 others on February 14, 2005. Saad Hariri was reportedly shown demonstrative and probative evidence that those currently watching and recording most of his moves, including his convoy routes and frequented destinations, constitute a mortal danger to him and that he urgently needs to take immediate security measures and even leave Lebanon until the threat could be removed. French, German, British and American officials, with knowledge of the intelligence reports have said even publicly that they do not credit the Aoun-Hezbollah-Iran claims that Hariri is being held hostage by Saudi Arabia. Meanwhile, some Western countries and that their security forces have 'activated' assets in Lebanon to investigate the threats.

The West as well as the Arab countries are backing Hariri. On 11/13/2017, France's Foreign Ministry insisted that an essential condition for the stability of the region is that Iran stop interfering in Lebanon's domestic affairs. The Ministry's spokeswoman read the statement: "Mr. Saad al-Hariri called on Iran yesterday to stop interfering in the affairs of Lebanon and its neighbors. We believe that this is an important condition for the stability of the region."

The preceding day, 11/12/2017, the UAE Minister of State for Defense Affairs warned a gathering of U.S. government, military and business leaders that Iranian-sponsored terror, while "similar" to al-Qaeda and ISIS, "has greater potential" for impacting negatively on the region and the world. He added: "Iran has exceeded all limits, and this has serious repercussions on world peace." Moreover, distributed on the sidelines of the meeting were summaries and some copies of newly released CIA documents from the 2011 Navy SEAL raid that killed Osama bin Laden. This observer has not read the physical documents but they allegedly contain demonstrative evidence that Iran provided funds, military advisers, staffers, travel documents and coordination to al Qaeda. Similar accusations are made with respect to claimed Iran assistance to ISIS while claiming that Iran needs ISIS to continue its mayhem in Syria and Iraq to have "Resistance" projects in both countries as it continues to colonize them. As it is doing to Yemen and has already accomplished, many believe, in Lebanon.

The main immediate cause of the current Lebanese crisis and possibly another civil war is grounded in the proxy confrontation between Iran and Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Syria, Yemen, Qatar, Afghanistan, Palestine and beyond. Very recent history has witnessed permutations in these confrontations which have brought the tensions to a head. "We are in the eye of the storm," Hariri announced on 11/12/2017 on Future TV. Lebanon's Prime Minister communicated between the lines that the unity government he formed a year ago was to construct and honor an agreement for any Lebanese militia not to interfere in regional affairs and it was agreed that Lebanon would 'disassociate' from regional war. But that Hezbollah was not serious and never intended to honor the agreement per orders from Iran. And that this has been the case since Hezbollah entered Lebanon's fractured political arena in 2005.

Hezbollah's critics have meanwhile called for addressing the political content of Hariri's resignation. Lebanese Forces leader Samir Geagea challenged Iran and Hezbollah on 11/11/2017 insisting that "if Hezbollah's March 8th alliance truly wants PM Saad Hariri's return they would withdraw from the crises in the region."

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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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