Torching Danish Consulate in Lebanon (2006)
For the past year and after every bombing that is targeting the Shiite community in Lebanon, I heard several politicians (and their followers) that the involvement of Hizbullah in Syria attracted al-Qaeda elements to Lebanon. Even though, I oppose Hizbullah involvement in Syria and I see Lebanon as a neutral country, but I can’t accept falsifying history in order to serve current political agenda. By doing so, we will look as if we are justifying the killing of Lebanese.
The same way, I oppose the assassination of March 14 figures, I do oppose the senseless targeting of Lebanese simply because they are Shiaa Muslims.
So in order not to falsify history and not to forget, the following is a refresh to the memory of many. It is to note that the following are just samples of events that occurred in Lebanon prior to the involvement of Hezbollah in Syria. I’m sure a detailed research will find more examples.
It seems they forgot, that a salafist group assassinated Sheikh Nizar al-Halabi in 1995 and in the weeks that followed, the Lebanese authorities arrested scores of Sunni fundamentalists in north Lebanon on charges of plotting terrorist attacks and banned Shahal’s charity (salafist group), and charged 8 salafist with publishing seditious material.
It seems they forgot how Salafist Muslims pushed the Sunnite clerics in Lebanon in 1999 to indict a on blasphemy charges of Lebanese singer Marcel Khalife.
It seems they forgot the assassination of four Lebanese judges in 1999 (in retaliation for the execution of Halabi’s assassins).
It seems they forgot the attack on Russian Embassy in 1999 by a salafist group.
It seems they forgot the Islamist militant Dinniyeh group that was led by Bassam Ahmad Kanj. In January 2000 they launched an attempt to create an Islamist mini-state in northern Lebanon. The militants seized control of dozens of villages in the mountainous Dinniyeh district, east of Tripoli before being defeated by a force of 13,000 Lebanese soldiers in several days of intense combat. Let us not forget how they butchered several Lebanese army soldiers. In 2005, members of the group were released by a parliamentary resolution after the 2005 elections which also pardoned Samir Geagea.
It seems they forgot several bombing attacks on American commercial franchises, the killing of an American missionary in 2002 and a failed plot to assassinate US ambassador Vincent Battle the following year. They forgot who was arrested in the case of bombing McDonald’s restaurant.
It seems they forgot that in 2004, nine suspects were arrested in Majdel Anjar under “suspicion of acts of terrorism in Lebanon,” which included the bombing of embassies and planned attacks against Lebanese security officials. Ismail al-Khatib was the head of al-Qaeda in Lebanon and had tried to recruit militants to fight for the militant Islamic movement in Iraq. Al-Khatib’s group had received funds from Europe and planned to send a vehicle packed with 300 kg (660 lbs) of explosives into the Italian embassy. Al-Khatib died during detention.
It seems that they forgot that in 2006: Protesters angry over Danish cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad clashed with Lebanese security forces, setting a building housing the Danish Mission on fire and attacking a nearby church. How can they forgot “Ghazwat al-Ashrfieh”?
It seems that they forgot Fateh al-Islam in 2007 and the 168 Lebanese Army martyrs who died fighting this group in Nahr al-Bared. Many had claimed that Fatah al Islam is merely a Syrian tool. They information that surfaced years after proved Fatah al Islam’s connections with al-Qaeda. Fateh al-Islam always claimed to be inspired by al-Qaeda’s worldview and ideology; it shared al-Qaeda’s modus operandi; and its leaders have long standing contacts with al-Qaeda operatives in Iraq and worldwide. Fatah al Islam’s particular links to al-Qaeda in Iraq can be traced to a statement issued by the “Mujahideen Shura Council in Iraq” (al-qaeda in Iraq under different name) in which it claimed to have exported its franchise to northern Lebanon under the umbrella of this new salafist jihadist group.
It seems they forgot the assassination on December 12, 2007, of Lebanese Army Major General Francois el-Hajj and his bodyguard who were killed in a car bombing attack in Baabda. Several suspects have been apprehended and investigated, and investigation suggests Salafist Jihadist involvement.
It seems they forgot that in September 2012: Protesters in Tripoli, have torched KFC, Hardee’s and Krispy Kreme outlets. The fires come as Pope Benedict XVI tours Lebanon and demonstrations across the Middle East rage in reaction to “The Innocence of Muslims” film.
As I mentioned this is just an example of many events. It is not right to falsify history by stating that Hizbullah brought al-Qaeda in Lebanon. Al-Qaeda excited in Lebanon since the early days of the American invasion of Iraq and the rise of al-Zarqawi there.
It is not right to falsify history for the sake of the blood of Lebanese who died by the attacks led by al-Qaeda and its affiliates in Lebanon. Opposing Hizbullah presence in Syria and its military role in Lebanon shouldn’t be an excuse to give al-Qaeda and Salafist groups a passing grade for all the crimes they committed in Lebanon.
It is simply not right.