Camouflaging Re-deployment

By: Elias Bejjani

Twenty-five years have already passed since the Syrian army entered Lebanon and imposed its barbaric hegemony over the whole country. During all these years the Damascus dictatorship have not learned to understand the Lebanese mentality. They did not realize yet, that their cunning games have no place in Lebanon and that the Lebanese despise and belittle such stupid attitudes that underestimates their intelligence. Meanwhile the Lebanese are becoming more and more aware of the Syrian regime's dirty devastating schemes drafted against their country as an independent entity and against its distinguishable identity as well as its history, culture and common living. The Syrian regime is apparently adamant to keep on playing childish and rhetoric theatrical games through its local puppet officials, especially the three presidents Lahoud, Beri and Hariri. At the same time Syria has resorted lately to a new barbarian war game through hit-men fundamentalists who were paid to demonstrate with swords, knifes, cleavers and canes in support of the Syrian Army's occupational role. Such Stalinist taming tactics have failed despite the loud noise and the glorifying, cajoling attitudes adopted by subservient politicians, clergymen, trojans, Mafioso's and traitors.

In this context the Lebanese army leadership has released a statement on June 14, 2001 stating that the Syrian troops are going to re- deploy some of their units in the Greater Beirut Metropolitan and Mount Lebanon, as pre-arranged and coordinated between the Syrian and Lebanese fraternal leadership. Following that statement the Syrian troops moved 7000 of their soldiers from Beirut, Years, Baabda, Beit Meri and nearby areas to the Bekaa valley and Syria itself.

Relatively the redeployment was very limited and had no real political significance. The Lebanese believe that the Syrian government should have issued the statement addressing the redeployment itself with acknowledgment from the UN and Arabic league. The redeployment and regardless of its media-wise exaggerated magnitude was nothing but a maneuver as the one executed last year. The Beirut government then claimed the Syrian army had re-deployed its troops in Al-Mateen region, but what practically took place was nothing, more then a routine change of troops. Few weeks later, the so-called re-deployed units came back to their original positions spanning their presence even into the Universities.

This actual show of redeployment appears to be nothing but an attempt to contain and tranquil the Lebanese public uprising against Syrian military and occupational massive presence. It is stifling to the patriotic national demand of restoring back Lebanon's independence, sovereignty and free decision making process. Now that the procedure is over, a communiqué from Syria was not issued to give details on the actual locations that were evacuated, neither the time frame for future complete withdrawal from all the Lebanese soil. The several communiqués issued by the Lebanese army before, through and after the redeployment procedure, although were welcomed by the Lebanese people, they had no legal binding to the Syrian Regime and in fact did not modify in any way the Syrian expansionism and occupational agenda.

The "Taef Accord" (signed in Saudi Arabia in 1989) was a conspiracy against the Lebanese, not a solution or an agreement among them. According to this Accord a two years time span was given to the Syrian Regime to re-deploy its troops in the Bekaa Valley followed by a complete withdrawal back to Syria. The Syrian troops were supposed to help the Lebanese authority regain its complete control over the Lebanese land through its own security forces. Such goal has not been established since 1992 , while the redeployment of the Syrian troops and its complete withdrawal are still in limbo. The truth of the matter is that the Syrian army had entered Lebanon in 1976 without any official request from the Lebanese government. Its prime initial mission was to support the PLO (Palestinians). But in reality these troops crushed the PLO, then the National Movement and later on the Lebanese forces and gradually all the different Lebanese and Palestinian armed factions. Syria left only the factions that are loyal to its leadership and whose mandate is to serve its schemes. The late Syrian president, Hafez Assad, stated publicly the reasons behind sending his troops to Lebanon in a speech he delivered at the Damascus University in 1976.

The Syrian Army and since its invasion to Lebanon in 1976 has never ever stood for Israel or engaged at any given time with its military apparatus during the numerous Israeli attacks against the Lebanese people and their infrastructure. Israel invaded Lebanon in 1982 crossing all away to its capital Beirut without any resistance from the Syrian Army. This army retreated to the Bekaa Valley and Mount Lebanon with Israel's approval and the United States' blessings. Later on it re-invaded Beirut in 1987. In 1990 it invaded the liberated region in the Eastern Sector and ousted Lebanon's legitimate government. Since then Syria fully controls the Lebanon's regime it installed against the will of the Lebanese people.

The latest so- called redeployment of the Syrian Army has no practical value. Syria is still in control of the Lebanese capital, as well as the suburbs including Yerze, Baabda, Mount Lebanon etc. The Syrian Regime also controls the Lebanese puppet government and the Leadership of all the Lebanese, civil security and military institutions. One and a half million Syrian workers still dominate the Lebanese labor market while the Lebanese are forced to immigrate at scary ratios (16 thousand every month) The Lebanese are calling for the restoration of their country's independence, sovereignty, free decision making, freedoms and democracy. In fact none of these would be reclaimed unless Syria withdraws its troops and the Lebanese people become again the sole rulers of their own country.

The recent camouflaged redeployment and all similar theatrical future maneuvers will not help Lebanon gain back its independence and freedom. Such procedures do no not address the exodus of 1.3 million Lebanese citizens who fled the country, offers no solution for the bankrupted economy and the 31 billion dollars of public debts, and does not solve any of the hundreds of other devastating problems. Only the implementation of the UN resolution 520 will end such agony, anything less will give the Syrians more leverage and time to merge Lebanon with Syria and destroy any thing and every thing that is Lebanese.

Long Live Free Lebanon