The Guardians of the Cedars issued the following communiqué:

The mercenary Lebanese regime desperately tried to make radical amendments to the French draft resolution creating an international investigation commission to look into the assassination of Rafik Hariri. It did so by dispatching an official delegation to the UN to specifically lobby for a truncation of the commission's authority and hampering its mission in order to prevent it from uncovering the facts about the crime. This reflects the state of terror and panic in which Lebanese and Syrian officials find themselves because of the likelihood that they will be found incriminated up to their eyeballs in the crime, and consequently be subjected to punitive measures as called for by UN resolution 1566, itself emanating from Chapter 7 of the UN Charter.

Suffice it to look into the requested amendments to gauge the state of concern of the Lebanese and Syrian regimes. These amendments are as follows:

1 – Demand the deletion of the “terrorist” qualifier from “terrorist act” in referring to the assassination of Rafik Hariri, as if the bombing happened by an act of God and the crime is somehow ordinary rather than terrorist, and the question then begs itself: If the killing of a figure like Hariri and twenty people with him, and the destruction of an entire block by half a ton of explosives is not a terrorist act in the eyes of the Syrians and their agents in Lebanon, then what is their definition of a “terrorist act”?

2 – Demand the deletion of the word “independent” from the paragraph urging the conduct of an “ independent international investigation” and insisting that the international commission carries out its mission within the framework of Lebanese sovereignty and according to Lebanese laws and regulations”. Which boils down to an attempt at sapping the independence of this commission, tying its hands and linking its work with the Lebanese judiciary.

3 – Demand the deletion of the phrase “all aspects” from the paragraph stating the necessity for the Investigation Commission to enjoy executive authority to uncover “all aspects of this despicable crime,” which suggests that the Lebanese regime fears a widening of the probe that could include it, and by so doing it is indicting itself.

4 – Demand the amendment of paragraph 7, in particular the phrase calling for “assisting the Lebanese people in their search for the truth” to replace with the phrase “Assisting the Lebanese government in this investigation,” as if this criminal and decaying regime really wants the truth and is concerned about it, when it has done everything in its power to cover up for the crime, stonewall and hamper the investigation, and tamper with the evidence on the scene of the crime.

5 – Demand the deletion of the word “all” from the paragraph stating that the Commission will conduct interviews “with all officials and others in Lebanon whose interviewing is deemed by the Commission to be necessary for the investigation,” and the elimination of the phrase “whose interviewing is deemed by the Commission to be necessary for the investigation,”. This is yet another proof of the attempt by Lebanese officials to get off the hook of having to confront the Investigation Commission for fear of their deep involvement in the scandal.

6 – Demand the deletion of the paragraph stating the need to give the Commission freedom of movement and “the right of access to all sites and installations that it sees necessary for the investigation.” This begs the question: What are those sites and installations that the Lebanese authorities fear to be accessed by the Commission? What are they hiding in them? This is what will be uncovered over the coming days and weeks.

7 – Demand the amendment of the final executive paragraph calling on the Secretary General to submit a bimonthly report on progress of the investigation, and instead approve only one report submitted by the Secretary General at the end of the investigation. Why would the regime fear periodic reports? Because the regime is trying to postpone as far as possible in the future its own inevitable indictment, but for how long can it hope to do that?

What is important is that the Security Council, and the US and France behind it, have to our knowledge turned down the demands of the Lebanese authorities, and have only agreed to very minor changes that do not affect the substance of the project and the prerogatives and authority of the Investigation Commission. What is more important is that the Commission will begin its work soon, interesting facts will quickly be uncovered, and many heads will start rolling!!!

And like the assassination of Hariri, the roving terrorist crimes that are taking place in the streets of East Beirut bear the signature of Syria and its agents in Lebanon on each bomb planted amidst the homes, factories and commercial institutions, with the goal of terrorizing the Lebanese and push them to choose between security under occupation and chaos under freedom.

We call on the Syrian regime, as it continues to commit serious errors, to be aware of three things:

Lebanon, at your service

Abu Arz
April 8, 2005