Help Lebanon & win the war on terrorism
By: Colonel Charbel Barakat

Last month, TV stations in Beirut entertained the Lebanese people both in Lebanon and the Diaspora with a locally produced, Hollywood style movie. It portrayed a terrorist group hijacking a civilian Lebanese airplane from Rome- Italy to Beirut International Airport. The hijackers demanded the release of their leader jailed in Lebanon, along with a money ransom.

After that came the starring role of the country Syria's appointed President, Prime Minister as well as the Interior Minister along with a cast of other people in charge of the operation. Then the audience witnessed first hand how an innocent passenger was killed in cold blood by the hijackers and tossed out of the plane. After that the Anti-Terrorist team members stormed the plane in a lighting strike, executing their roles like professional actors in a Hollywood scene; yes, intensely performing a swift act in which they shot three terrorists and captured a fourth one.

The viewers were overwhelmed by the exhilarating operation that started without any introductory warning to the viewers that what they were about to see was a simulation.   Since it was aired right after the evening news, it made many   viewers--especially those in the Diaspora--believe that it was real.

For a few minutes some emotional viewers surrendered to day dreaming and wishful thinking of a strong Lebanese government. They even envisioned a bright future where Lebanon had joined up with the rest of the civilized world in its war against terrorism and the demise of its organizations.

While the Lebanese were watching this televised simulated drama they began to recall their haunted memories of the bloody war years, the war of others on their country's land and its democracy. They reminisced about the plight of the American TWA airline that was actually hijacked by Hizbollah terrorists under the watchful eyes of national and international TV news cameras.

In that real life incident, terrorists boldly waved real Kalashnikov machine guns, not small knives, at news cameramen while the hijacked plane was landing on Beirut's airport tarmac. News cameras captured the horrific scene of the terrorists tossing the body of a young American man from the plane after murdering him in cold blood. This poor victim happened to be on board, exactly as it was portrayed in the simulated Lebanese movie clip! Hizbollah's notorious terrorist named Immad Moughniyeh had the actual starring role in the TWA hijacking crime.

Although Lebanon was put on the list of terrorist-supporting countries, even after the departure of Arafat's PLO terrorist organization and its like-minded groups, the whole world let loose the hand of terrorism to control Lebanon.Terrorism was and is still allowed to dictate its policies on Lebanon and the Lebanese people. Above all, Lebanon was handed over to the Syrian Baathist regime.The free world assigned the Syrian Baathist wolf to protect the helpless Lebanese lamb; what a travesty.

While watching the anti-terrorist movie simulation many of the viewers did not doubt the actuality of Lebanese capabilities in fighting and stopping terrorism if and when freed from the Syrian occupation and the oppression of its locally appointed human wolves.

The Lebanese people have never doubted the capabilities of their governmental security institutions to fight terrorism if and when there is an actual leadership willing to do so. In reality they recognize that their security institutions possess much more than the needed skills and means to execute far more than such sophisticated simulation, and even to apply these skills and means successfully in actual circumstances.

Furthermore, the Lebanese people are fully aware beyond a reasonable doubt that not combating terrorism in Lebanon is not due to lack of resources or security institutional skills, but because of a corrupted puppet regime that sponsors terrorism and terrorists.

The same Lebanese regime that is now bragging media-wise about its simulated hijacking movie was installed by the Syrian Baathist occupier in 1990. In fact it has nothing the Lebanese are proud of nor does it represent them in any way or means. It is a puppet body that serves the interests of its Syrian masters who run the most world-wide notorious regime that harbors, nurtures and exports terrorism and terrorists to the whole world.

Under the Syrian occupation, Lebanon has become a haven for terrorism and an arena for breeding generations and generations of terrorists. The Lebanese are the first victims of terrorism; they are all hostages at the mercy of their Syrian occupier.

If the Lebanese who attempted to eradicate terrorism in 1969 had been successful, and if the notorious, doomed Cairo Accord had not been imposed on the Lebanese government, Lebanon would have been a successful economic role model and the envy of other nations. Perhaps Lebanon would not have lost thousands of its best youth in the war waged on its people by others, and would not have lost more then one-third of its population to immigration.

One wonders why King Hussein of Jordan was given the green light to eradicate all the terrorist groups from his kingdom while Lebanon was restrained from doing so?  most probably, because the Syrian scheme was successful in infiltrating Lebanon and in creating a chaotic situation. The outcome has been thirty years of Syrian occupation with prevailing poverty, awkwardness, chaos and persecution.

There is no question that terrorism will be ultimately defeated and its protectors will be forced to leave Lebanon with shame and humiliation. Now, while the days left for terrorism are shrinking, the Lebanese would love to watch a real movie clip showing the actual capturing of Immad Moughniyeh, the notorious Hizbollah terrorist or perhaps Abou Mihjen or any of the hundreds of criminals taking haven in the "Hizbollah's Islands of security" in South Lebanon, Baalbak and Beirut's Southern Suburbs or in the Palestinian refugee camps. No one doubts Lebanon's desperate need for Anti-Terrorist Squads just like the one that executed the televised simulated plane hijacking to rid the whole country of all forms of terrorism.

Is it possible that the free world has been turning a blind eye for the last thirty years to what the Lebanese people are going through? At the same time is it true that this same free world is not aware of the hardships the Palestinian refugees are encountering in Lebanon because of Syrian-inflicted terrorism? Don't both people have the same right to live in peace and not be dealt with as hostages and pawns? Till when will the Syrian Baathist regime be allowed to control and dictate the destiny of the Middle East and its people?

The main issue here is not who can eradicate terrorism from Lebanon, nor the skill of locating terrorists and identifying the locations of their hideouts. In fact Lebanon's seventy thousand-man army joined with its other security forces are more than capable of taking full control of the whole country, including the Hizbollah's "islands of security" and the Palestinian refugee camps, provided the Syrian occupation comes to an end, and the Lebanese people are given the chance to elect officials to freely rule their own country.

At the present time, and because of the Syrian occupation, the Lebanese authorities have no control whatsoever, or any say so inside the "Hizbollah's security Islands" or in the Palestinian refugee camps. These regions are a haven for all kinds of local, regional and international criminals, drug traffickers, terrorists, radicals, thieves and Mafiosi.

Inside these Syrian protected enclaves of career criminals and murders are killers of the four Lebanese judges, killers of Ramzi Irani, the executioners of the Antonite order nun, the assailants who hit the Future TV station with rockets, the renowned terrorist Immad Moughniyeh, and many, many others who enjoy freedom and escape legal punishment.

We strongly believe that there was no need for airing the simulated plane hijacking movie, as long as criminals such as Immad Moughniyeh are still free and not behind bars. Meanwhile we are confident that such a camouflaged movie is not going to make the USA, nor the rest of the countries in the free world believe for a second that the Syrian Baathist regime and its Lebanese clone are serious about fighting terrorism while in reality they are terrorists and are using terrorism as a means to oppress their people and jeopardize the interests of the whole world.

We strongly believe that the current war waged globally on terrorism will never be successful until the whole world starts to show more interest in the ongoing ordeal of the Lebanese people under the hegemony of the Syrian Baathist regime and in the fanaticism of Iranian-imported military revolution. These two countries are the masterminds and sponsors of terrorism, and without freeing Lebanon from their evil control, all world-wide efforts against terrorism will be in vain.

We call on the USA, Canada and the rest of the free democracies in the whole world to help the patriotic Lebanese people liberate their country; otherwise the civilized world will see no victory over terrorism and terrorists.

(Translated from Arabic by the Canadian Lebanese Human Rights Federation (CLHRF) Media Committee)