If Israel Did Not Cause Beirut's Explosion, They Sure Had A Plan To Exploit It DMT.NEWS - DMT NEWS

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If Israel Did Not Cause Beirut's Explosion, They Sure Had A Plan To Exploit It DMT.NEWS

Article by WN.Com Correspondent Dallas Darling

On hearing reports of the deadly explosions that rocked Beirut on August 4, 2020, Lebanon’s President Michel Aoun immediately announced it may have been a bomb or rocket. (1) He also had good reason to assume Israel was behind the largest blast in Beirut’s history, which led to 220 deaths and 7,000 injuries and caused $10-15 billion in property damage. Along with calling the country an “enemy of the state,” Israel had just clashed with Hezbollah soldiers. In fact, the mainstream media was trying to verify if the claim was true that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had confirmed the Beirut explosion as an attack of their own. (2)

The two deadly explosions came just days after a major security incident at the border between the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights and Lebanon. The incident involved Israeli soldiers and four Hezbollah fighters who allegedly crossed the border and came days after a Hezbollah member was killed by Israeli airstrikes in Syria and an Israeli drone crashed in Lebanon. Hezbollah said their fighters had not crossed the border, but that Israel opened fire first. Two dozen explosions were heard in Lebanon; an Israeli shell smashed in a civilian home, narrowly missing a family in the house at the time. (3)

Why Lebanon?

Lebanon, home to 5 million Sunni, Shia, Druze, Christian, and Palestinian refugees since 1948, suffered a 15-year civil war from 1975-1990. Stoked by Israel, it led to 120,000 deaths and a million refugees. Israel then invaded in 1982, briefly occupied Beirut, driving the Palestinian Liberation Organization into exile, and abetted a Maronite militia-led massacre of 3,500 Palestinian refugees and Lebanese, Iranian, Syrian, Pakistani and Algerian civilians at the Sabra and Shatila camps. Following the civil war, Israel’s occupation of southern Lebanon continued until 2000, when Israel abandoned its client South Lebanon Army and withdrew. (4)

Hezbollah (1982) Party of God emerged in response to the Israeli invasion of Lebanon, inspired by the Iranian Revolution and Palestinian resistance. A Shia organization feared by Israel, it inspired the Sunni Palestinian Hamas. It helps the poor and resists Israel through militant grassroots organizations. Its continued popularity, deriving especially from its effective defense of the country against the Israeli 2006 aggression and more recent ones, has led to its participation in coalition governments since 2005. Indeed, under the intense pressure of threatened and actual invasions by Israel during the past 15-years, it has gained even more power.

Targeting Beirut to Destroy Hezbollah

Israel and the United States would like nothing more than to pin the blame on Hezbollah. They have suspected a large shipment of ammonium nitrate, apparently seized in 2013 from a Moldovan-flagged ship, was stored for vast quantities of explosive material in Beirut and is close at hand for the Iran-backed Hezbollah’s militia to be used against Israel and Syria. They also believe Hezbollah controls many of Beirut’s port facilities. (5)

Blaming the blast on Hezbollah’s welding work, where the ammonium nitrate was stored, is good propaganda for the court of public opinion and their shadow war against Lebanon.

Something else Israel and the U.S. are exploiting are the massive protests in response to the disaster, including the swift collapse of the Lebanese government.

Indeed, many have accused Lebanon’s leaders and Hezbollah of culpability for the blast through their alleged negligence and corruption.

The street demonstrators appear to be marked by the presence of the Christian and Sunni parties and ex-generals. Their leader is former Prime Minister Saad Hariri, Washington’s and Tel Aviv’s and Riyadh’s man in Lebanon. He was forced to resign last year due to mass demonstrations against economic hardships and sectarian politics. (6)

Exploiting Lebanon Through Aid and Charities

Elsewhere in the city, hundreds of thousands of people are living in severely damaged homes, many without windows or doors. In some neighborhoods, the infrastructure needs repaired. Two main water and electricity stations were heavily damaged by the explosions. (7) The country was already suffering a major economic downturn due to COVID-19, and a U.S. and Israeli led economic blockade to punish Hezbollah. Israel and the U.S. had been concerned over Hezbollah’s social activities in re-politicizing Lebanon’s culture and by emphasizing collective community as a set of Islamic values, norms, and role models to be emulated by Shia living. (8)

Critics warn this is the real reason that Israel wants to suddenly offer aid to Lebanon, their rival. It is not necessarily a gesture of good will, but a way to make inroads into the country and replace Hezbollah’s collective communities with communities that are pro-Israel. The medical and humanitarian aid moreover would make Israel appear as a benevolent player in the Middle East, especially as it comes under fire for relocating Bedouin Tribes and forcibly annexing parts of the West Bank and Gaza Strip. Charities have come under scrutiny too, specifically Jewish and Christian ones that have strong ties to the Israel and U.S. governments.

Resistance to Western Imperialism

Whatever reason for the deadly blasts in Beirut, Lebanon, the ideal of Hezbollah’s envisioning an Islamic community, where there is respect to counter the dehumanization and alienation of contemporary and Westernized, capitalistic society-to turn anger from a destructive course into something politically useful, socially constructive, encouraging personal responsibility and initiative and service to community, has just been shattered. What is more, it may never recover. If Greater Israel and the United States has its way, the same will occur with other Islamic-led societies which also resist the march of imperialism.

Dallas Darling (darling@wn.com)

(Dallas Darling is the author of Politics 501: An A-Z Reading on Conscientious Political Thought and Action, Some Nations Above God: 52 Weekly Reflections On Modern-Day Imperialism, Militarism, And Consumerism in the Context of John’s Apocalyptic Vision, and The Other Side Of Christianity: Reflections on Faith, Politics, Spirituality, History, and Peace. He is a correspondent for www.WN.com. You can read more of Dallas’ writings at www.beverlydarling.com and www.WN.com/dallasdarling.)

(1) https://www.jpost.com/breaking-news/lebanese-president-possibility-beirut-blast-was-caused-by-bomb-or-rocket-637838

(2) https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/factcheck/2020/08/06/fact-check-no-evidence-beirut-blast-israeli-attack/3297756001/

(3) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2020_Israel%E2%80%93Hezbollah_clashes

(4) Walberg, Eric. Islamic Resistance to Imperialism. Atlanta, Georgia: Clarity Press, Inc., 2015., p. 207.

(5) https://www.bloomberg.com/opinion/articles/2020-08-05/beirut-explosion-hezbollah-will-not-escape-blame-for-blast

(6) http://axisoflogic.com/artman/publish/Article_88428.shtml

(7) https://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-53720383

(8) Walberg, Eric. Islamic Resistance to Imperialism., p. 208.

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