His murder is another act of terrorism aimed at trying to subjugate Lebanon to Syrian domination.
- Scott McClellan, White House Press Secretary
Lost in the hullaballoo over our excellent adventure in Iraq has been something that may ultimately pose even more of a threat to the Middle East: Syria’s belligerence. Though Syria ostensibly pulled it’s military out of Lebanon, they clearly still have their fingers in the pie. Lebanese politicians and intellectuals who advocate positions that threaten Syrian interests will find themselves in grave peril. Some may even suffer the fate of former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri and journalist/legislator Gibran Tueni, who was killed yesterday by a car bomb.
There’s no direct proof at this time that Syria was involved in either assassination, but Syrian fingerprints are all over both executions. The question now, given Our Glorious Leader’s commitment to his never-ended Global War on Terror, is what the American government is going to do about Syrian aggression in the region. Left unchecked, Syria could pose more of a threat to the Middle East and world oil supplies than Saddam Hussein ever did? So what’s a War President to do??
A prominent anti-Syrian journalist and lawmaker was killed by a car bomb Monday, a day after returning from France, where he had been staying periodically for fear of assassination.
A previously unknown group claimed responsibility, saying Gibran Tueni was “spreading poisons and lies despite our repeated warnings to him.”
Tueni played a major role in the huge demonstrations that, combined with international pressure, forced Syria to withdraw its troops from Lebanon in April, ending a 29-year presence in the neighboring country. Those demonstrations were triggered by a February car bomb that killed former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri.
Tueni’s uncle, Telecommunications Minister Marwan Hamadeh, and the leading Lebanese politician Walid Jumblatt blamed Syria for the bombing ‚Äö√Ñ√Æ a charge Syria denied.
Anyone with even a minimal knowledge of recent Syrian-Lebanese history should recognize what’s happening here. Though the Syrian military may no longer have an overt presence inside Lebanon’s borders, the Syrian government clearly is not about to give up their influence over Lebanon. Those Lebanese politicians, journalists, and intellectuals with the temerity to openly advocate anti-Syrian positions would be well advised to watch their backs and be sure their life insurance is paid current.
Strictly speaking, the US has no dog in this fight, except of course for out interest in promoting peace in the region. Given Our Glorious Leader’s promise to fight terrorism wherever it exists, though, I’m wondering when we’ll be lighting up Damascus with cruise missiles? After all, we have 150,000 combat-hardened troops right next door in Iraq…how hard would it be to take our show on the road??