The Guardians of the Cedars issued the following communique:

People in Lebanon are asking themselves these days if they are back to the 1970s. Has the Palestinian problem come back to haunt us in our own land? And is the slogan “The road to Palestine goes through Jounieh” alive and well in the imagination of the Palestinians? What then, we ask, is prompting this massive effort by the Palestinians to arm themselves and bring in fighters and mercenaries across the Syrian border to establish military bases outside of the camps? And what do we make of the threatening statements and warnings they have issued against the Lebanese State and its officials?

This Palestinian posture can only mean one of two things: Either they are determined to fight the Lebanese like they did in 1975, or they are determined to fight Israel using Lebanese territory as a launching pad for their activities. And in both cases, the outcome will not be in their interest, as they seem to have learned nothing from the lessons of the past. In addition, everyone will lose and the Lebanese will pay yet again dearly in their lives and livelihood the cost of hosting an ingrate people who do not know gratitude and who have no sense whatsoever of their status as guests in this hospitable country.

Shame on all the politicians for their evasive position on this dangerous issue. Some support keeping weapons in the hands of the Palestinians, some reject the idea of weapons outside the camps but would allow them inside the camps, and yet others remain neutral as if the matter did not concern them. We have not heard a single politician taking a loud and clear stance demanding a definitive disarming of the Palestinians in application of resolutions 1559 and 1614, and the submission of the camps to the authority of Lebanese law much as is the case with the Palestinian camps in Syria and Jordan. Meanwhile, the State has engaged the Palestinian factions in a dialog instead of confronting them, as if dialog will convince them to voluntarily drop their weapons.

If the international community is supporting this government in the hope that it will one day begin implementing resolutions 1559 and 1614, we can assure the community that implementing two resolutions of such importance requires heroes and statesmen of the highest caliber. Unfortunately, we do not see in this ministerial hodge-podge but pseudo-men and irrelevant politicians who live at the margin of history and time, and they are truly hopeless. Live and learn.

As to the story of Major-General Ghazi Kanaan's suicide, we cannot fathom how anyone can believe this fabrication. The consensus is that he was deliberately murdered as part of a cleanup operation aiming at eliminating witnesses and rescuing the Syrian regime from the impending accusation of its involvement in the assassination of Rafik Hariri. And so it is that Ghazi Kanaan is the fifth General in the Syrian-Lebanese security apparatus to fall as a result of the ongoing international investigation in this crime. The next question that now urgently begs itself: Who is next? And how will he murdered? Indeed, it has been said that he who cooks up the poison shall die eating it!!

Lebanon, at your service

October 14, 2005