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Friday, August 25, 2006

Hezbollah owns Lebanon. Lebanon owns UNIFIL. 3 Armies against Israel.

This is a follow-up and expansion of this post, suggesting that Lebanon made a deal with Hezbollah before accepting 1701.

UN Resolution 1701 includes a couple of interesting sections:
3. Emphasises the importance of the extension of the control of the government of Lebanon over all Lebanese territory in accordance with the provisions of resolution 1559 (2004) and resolution 1680 (2006), and of the relevant provisions of the Taif Accords, for it to exercise its full sovereignty, so that there will be no weapons without the consent of the government of Lebanon and no authority other than that of the government of Lebanon;
Meaning that if Lebanon wants Hezbollah to continue to have weapons in the south, they can.
8. Calls for Israel and Lebanon to support a permanent ceasefire and a long-term solution based on the following principles and elements:

* Full respect for the Blue Line by both parties;
* security arrangements to prevent the resumption of hostilities, including the establishment between the Blue Line and the Litani river of an area free of any armed personnel, assets and weapons other than those of the government of Lebanon and of UNIFIL as authorised in paragraph 11, deployed in this area;
* Full implementation of the relevant provisions of the Taif Accords, and of resolutions 1559 (2004) and 1680 (2006), that require the disarmament of all armed groups in Lebanon, so that, pursuant to the Lebanese cabinet decision of July 27, 2006, there will be no weapons or authority in Lebanon other than that of the Lebanese state;
* No foreign forces in Lebanon without the consent of its government;
* No sales or supply of arms and related materiel to Lebanon except as authorized by its government;
Here it sounds like Lebanon may not allow Hezbollah to have weapons, nor to import weapons but again there are caveats that make it sound like the government may allow Hezbollah to purchase weapons if it wants to. Given the support that the Lebanese government showed Hezbollah during the war, it looks like Hezbollah will indeed become an autonomous unit of the Lebanese army, with a big wink from the government, and do whatever the hell it wants.

What are UNIFIL's responsibilities?
11. Decides, in order to supplement and enhance the force in numbers, equipment, mandate and scope of operations, to authorize an increase in the force strength of Unifil to a maximum of 15,000 troops, and that the force shall, in addition to carrying out its mandate under resolutions 425 and 426 (1978):

* a. Monitor the cessation of hostilities;

* b. Accompany and support the Lebanese armed forces as they deploy throughout the South, including along the Blue Line, as Israel withdraws its armed forces from Lebanon as provided in paragraph 2;

* c. Coordinate its activities related to paragraph 11 (b) with the government of Lebanon and the government of Israel;

* d. Extend its assistance to help ensure humanitarian access to civilian populations and the voluntary and safe return of displaced persons;

* e. Assist the Lebanese armed forces in taking steps towards the establishment of the area as referred to in paragraph 8;

* f. Assist the government of Lebanon, at its request, to implement paragraph 14;

12. Acting in support of a request from the government of Lebanon to deploy an international force to assist it to exercise its authority throughout the territory, authorizes Unifil to take all necessary action in areas of deployment of its forces and as it deems within its capabilities, to ensure that its area of operations is not utilised for hostile activities of any kind, to resist attempts by forceful means to prevent it from discharging its duties under the mandate of the Security Council, and to protect United Nations personnel, facilities, installations and equipment, ensure the security and freedom of movement of United Nations personnel, humanitarian workers, and, without prejudice to the responsibility of the government of Lebanon, to protect civilians under imminent threat of physical violence;

13. Requests the secretary general urgently to put in place measures to ensure Unifil is able to carry out the functions envisaged in this resolution, urges member states to consider making appropriate contributions to Unifil and to respond positively to requests for assistance from the Force, and expresses its strong appreciation to those who have contributed to Unifil in the past;

14. Calls upon the government of Lebanon to secure its borders and other entry points to prevent the entry in Lebanon without its consent of arms or related materiel and requests Unifil as authorised in paragraph 11 to assist the government of Lebanon at its request;

Now, keeping in mind the idea of a Hezbollah that is an official part of the Lebanese army just as it is an official part of the Lebanese government, what can one make of this:
Annan said that the U.N. force would be able to deploy along the Lebanese-Syrian border to help prevent weapons shipments to Hezbollah, but only if the Lebanese government asked for such help. Lebanon, to date, as neither asked for this nor ruled it out — but Syrian President Bashar Assad has strongly objected.

"It is generally accepted that the disarmament of Hezbollah cannot be done by force," Annan told reporters. "The troops are not going there to disarm Hezbollah, let's be clear on that."
And this:
Lebanon is against the deployment of United Nations peacekeeping forces along its border with Syria, Information Minister Ghazi Aridi has told AFP.

"Only the Lebanese army is in charge of controlling the borders with Syria and it is out of the question to deploy the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL)," he said Friday.

"These are ideas put forward by Israel and the United States, but Lebanon does not take orders from anyone, neither the United States, nor Israel, nor Syria, nor
Iran," he said.
Putting it all together, assuming that Hezbollah will indeed become a part of the Lebanese army, we have three effective armies in Lebanon all ostensibly doing the same job - to defend "Lebanon" against Israel.

The Lebanese army will not do anything to stop Hezbollah, and in the past it never did. The UN is under specific mandate to only do things that the Lebanese government requests, with the notable exception of protecting Lebanese civilians from attack (but not to protect Israeli civilians from attacks that originate in Lebanon!)

This is not a "peacekeeping" force - this is outsourcing!

As we've already seen, the new UNIFIL is happy to monitor and report on Israeli violations of the cease fire, but it ignores Hezbollah violations. So UNIFIL is essentially providing the Hezbonese army with manpower and equipment to fight the Zionist enemy. The Lebanese government will not do anything to upset Hezbollah or Syria, and the UN will not do anything to upset the Lebanese government.

This is the real legacy of 1701. Kofi already knows this as he emphasizes that UNIFIL will not stop arms smuggling not will it disarm Hezbollah - the two most important parts of 1701 from the free world's perspective.