Monday, November 22, 2010

I'm Hezbollah--Fly Me!

Would you fly in a jet overseen by Hezbollah?
If you're flying out of Lebanon, you may not have a choice.

Commenting on the news that earlier this month Rep. Howard Berman lifted the hold on $100 million of funding for the Lebanese Armed Forces, Michael Rubin notes the implications of Hezbollah's infiltration of the Lebanese Armed Forces:
The State Department wants to fund the Lebanese army in order to symbolize America's commitment to Lebanese sovereignty and counter Lebanon's temptation to turn elsewhere for its weaponry. But any funding for the Lebanese Armed Forces at this point in time would be akin to providing aid and assistance directly to Hezbollah, a terrorist group with American blood on its hands.
(It is no wonder that, when I visited Mlitta, a museum in southern Lebanon commemorating Hezbollah military operations, my guide remarked that he wouldn’t be surprised if authorities erected a statue of President Obama, because his policies are interpreted in Lebanon as friendly to Hezbollah’s growth and dominance.)

...And then there's Rafik Hariri International Airport in Beirut. While in theory the Lebanese army remains in control of it, the Lebanese readily acknowledge that Hezbollah has now infiltrated the airport. (Given the terrorism alerts over parcel bombs, how secure do you feel knowing that a terrorist group oversees the screening and loading of bags onto major European airliners?) Of course, diplomats don't wish to acknowledge how compromised Beirut’s airport is, for to do so would be embarrassing for Lebanon’s prime minister, so we will play the smoke-and-mirrors game until another passenger jet is brought down, Lockerbie-style.[emphasis added]
I suppose that at the very least there would be less of a chance of the plane being hijacked...

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