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Hijacking the Cedars’ March to freedom
By Anwar Wazen

October 30th

A fallacy has been promoted by Druze chieftain Walid Jumblatt, the Hariri family, their TV station and their other media outlets pretending that the crowds of Lebanese that flocked to Liberty Square on March the 14th did so because they wanted to know the truth “Al Hakika” about the crime perpetrated against ex-prime minister Rafik Hariri.

There is no doubt that the anger that motivated one and a half million Lebanese to gather in downtown Beirut was something more than the shocking crime. You didn’t need to be a Lebanese genius to guess who the suspects were in instigating , planning and executing this heinous crime. Judge D.Mehlis and his professional team confirmed what we suspected then. Syria’s baathist Regime and its thugs most probably had a hand in the murder of two Presidents of Lebanon, the Mufti and other religious dignitaries, Kamal Jumblatt who opposed the presence of the Syrian army way back in 1976, the outspoken journalists, polticians and other dissidents in Lebanon and Syria. The same Regime most probably burned off Rafik Hariri and 21 of his comerades, bodyguards and other innocent pedestrians in a terrorist crime reminiscent of the “Godfather” movie.

Rafik Hariri was no Saint, even though he was anointed as such by family and friends. The Cedars’ marchers had a message to convey to Hizbolla, the Amal movement and other pro Syrian mercenaries who flexed their muscles a week earlier in a demonstration they dubbed “loyalty and solidarity with Syria”. Few days after the murder of Hariri the father, Hariri the son was given the political mantel to “..carry on his father’s project …” Saad Hariri is a newcomer to Lebanon’s political arena. He needed a political mentor, Walid Jumblatt obliged.

W. Jumblatt is an ex “warlord” who never denied that he collaborated and profiteered for years from the same Syrian mafia that probably assassinated his father Kamal in 1977, and ruled Lebanon in the most brutal and oppressive manner for 29 years. Walid Jumblatt regretted in his eulogy to Syria’s mafia Don Ghazi Kanaan the "death of a man who did a lot of good for Lebanon…" as usual Mr Jumblatt infatuated us and he was short of wiping one or two tears from his eyes whilst praising his old friend during that infamous press conference.

Upon the demise of his father the young Saad Hariri a novice to Lebanese politics landed in Beirut in his father’s private plane and entered the political arena from the “big gate”. I meant Saudi money gate. He controls today the so called majority of the parliament. He nominated the prime minister of Lebanon who incidentally was employed by his late father and he appointed other ministers and MPs. When he travels he is received by Head of States, foreign ministers and good old Kofi Annan. He declared the other day from
Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, that Hizbolla is his first and foremost strategic ally. It was Hizbolla the Iranian sponsored party of Allah that organised the March 8th demonstration to show loyalty and solidarity to Syria’s baathist Regime, the Regime that is unofficially still accused to be behind the liquidation of Rafik Hariri.

Understanding this logic really beats me especially when we hear that Saad Hariri has committed to the international community the implementation of UNSCR 1559 sponsored by the US and Mr Chirac and in which there is a clause asking to disarm all militias in Lebanon. Hizbolla refuses to disarm and has always rejected UNSCR 1559. Is it double talk from Saad Hariri or political duplicity, time will tell . “..carry on Rafik Hariri’s project ..” Does Saad Hariri mean the project to defeat all the other Sunni voices in Lebanon by the power of the Greenback?? Is he going to carry on the project of corruption, graft and bankrupting the State ? Will the free voices that were forced into exile during Syria’s years of hegemony over Lebanon be allowed to come back and contribute in rebuilding a new
Lebanon based on respect for human rights, freedom of expression, the right to a free education, healthcare and social welfare ?? Or will they find themselves again in a jungle where they will be harassed by a neo-Syrian order. Will they be discriminated against and deprived of their basic rights ?

These are questions that we are not asking for the sake of embarrassing prime minister Siniora, we know that he is trying his best in walking the tightrope and we must admit that he has been thus far succeeding in his balancing act. We would like to hear from him on the case of our comerades in the Lebanese Kurdish Democratic Party. We hear that the Hariri clan is still pursuing a discriminatory policy vis à vis these brave fellows. Their Leader Abdulkarim Meho cannot return back to Lebanon due to a pending court order which completely ignores his right to free expression.The case was doctored against him by the Syrian appointees in the Lebanese courts when Lebanon was under Syrian occupation. Mr Meho was one of the effective loud voices advocating from exile for
Lebanon to be free from Syrian hegemony. What about the three members of the “The Guardians of the Cedars” party who were packed and put in prison (and they still are) after they made a press conference in which they declared that Lebanon should withdraw from the Arab League. Is this the type of Democracy and Freedom that we were promised by George W. Bush ?

At this critical juncture of our History, Lebanon needs Statesmen and politicians that should be accountable for recklessness, blunders, corruption and greed, nepotism and injustice. My humble advice to Mr Saad Hariri is to be vigilant in his promising political career and to avoid the pitfalls that his late father did not avoid willingly or could not avoid for a reason or another.

Anwar Wazen studied at St. Joseph University in Beirut, Lebanon, earning a Master's degree in Economics. He lived in several countries in the Middle East and the Persian Gulf, working on country risk exposure for American and Arab Banks. In Brussels, Mr. Wazen became an activist and advocate for the Lebanese cause and contributed many articles promoting freedom of Lebanon from the Syrian occupation. He was published by political web sites and Lebanese newsmedia. He speaks Arabic, English and French fluently. He can be reached on aewazen@msn.com


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