The Guardians of the Cedars issued the following communiqué:

And now, after the fundamentalist group has gone too far in its delusions and deceptions, and intensified its false accusations of treason against members of the South Lebanon Army, we feel obligated to public opinion to expose certain truths that are missing or deliberately ignored about that Army. The political insolence of that group, “the bully that gets away with everything”, has gone too far without anyone daring to deter it or rebut its lies in line with the facts and the truth.

First, what happened on May 23, 2000 was not a liberation of the South as is said and rumored every day. That was a voluntary withdrawal executed by Israel in agreement and coordination with the fundamentalist group, and Israel imposed it on the members of the South Lebanon Army for known internal political reasons and not for military reasons. Therefore, the so-called victory that the fundamentalist group likes to brag about day in and day out is closer to fantasy than to reality.!!

Second, the true occupation was not along the border region as is propagated by the fundamentalists and their allies, because the presence of Israeli forces was there for the protection of Israel's northern settlements and not out of greed for Lebanese land and water as many believe. Otherwise, Israel would have stayed there like it stays in the Golan waiting for a comprehensive regional settlement. The real occupation was in the Lebanese capital and in all five provinces where Syrian forces dominated everything, stealing anything it pleased from land and water, and hijacking the decision and the very existence of the country. Therefore, the real liberation of Lebanon took place on April 26, 2005 and not on May 23, 2000!!!

Third, the alliance of the South Lebanon Army, and before it the Free Lebanon Army, with the State of Israel was coerced and not by choice, and it was never against the interests of Lebanon. Instead it was to protect Lebanon from the Palestinian-Syrian-Iranian invasion that marched to the South from every far-flung corner of the region. In contrast, the alliance of the fundamentalist group with Syria, Iran and the Palestinian rejectionist organizations cannot be more against the interests of Lebanon. Indeed, it represents a lethal danger to the very existence and being of the country and threatens its future with the worst consequences.

And as far as the subject of dealing with the enemy and serving as its agents, how can this group take it upon itself to override the Lebanese State, make direct contacts with Iran and discuss with it political, security and military affairs that concern the fate of the Lebanese nation and people without the Lebanese government's knowledge and away from any official oversight? Isn't that a flagrant display of political insolence? Isn't that openly serving as the agent of a foreign country? Or is this some kind of selective definition that one applies according to convenience and mood?

This is enough facts and truths for public opinion to decide who are the real foreign agents: The authentic Lebanese or the fundamentalists???

Lebanon, at your service

Abu Arz
August 12, 2005