Monday, May 26, 2008

The Fall of Lebanon 
Barry Rubin:

May 21, 2008, is a date--like December 7 (1941) and September 11 (2001)--that should now live in infamy. Yet who will notice, mourn, or act the wiser for it?

On that day, the Beirut spring was buried under the reign of Hizballah.

We have all but taken Islamofacsism's sword from their hands in Iraq...but they have successfully slipped a shiv into our ribs in Lebanon this week.

The failure of the West to sustain the fledgling democratic movement in Lebanon that began to give its people a glimmer of light and hope in 2004 is one of the great policy failures of the decade. It may be that such support was impossible after the Hezbollah war of 2006...that as a result of Hezbollah's mastery of the art of what I call "hypermodern war," their trading of battlespace for symbolic strikes against Israel and their successful exploitation against a corrupt and incompetent press corps as well as a successful full-spectrum insurgency movement, complete with an extensive and effective Civil Affairs operation within Lebanon, it was simply inevitable.

But it will prove to be a severe blow to any chance of a lasting peace in the middle east, and there will be copious amounts of blood shed over it.

Iran and Syria are to blame. But they will not be the ones shedding blood.

It will be Lebanese and Israelis doing the dying.

Sure, some of the Lebanese just need killing. But think of it: As long as Syria and Iran have a stranglehold on Lebanese sovreignty, they will be able to send their agents to terrorize Israelis and Lebanese Christian, Druze, and moderate Muslims with impunity. So long as Lebanon exists to do their dirty work, Syria and Iran will get away with murder after murder.

Lebanon can and should be a democracy. Its descent into the murderous hands of Hezbollah is a grievous blow, and one which will bleed for years.

Powerline notes the Rubin piece under the headline, "The Gathering Storm," evoking Churchill's book and memories of WWII. But what it brings to mind to me are the words of William Butler Yeats: "What rough beast, its hour come round at last, slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?"

Splash, out


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