Hizbullah has real clout [Archives:2004/708/Opinion]

February 2 2004

Over the last three decades, Hizbullah has proven its ability to remain at the forefront of the public media channels in the Arab and Moslem world, as the most effective force against the supposedly undefeatable Israeli and intelligence machinery. It outwits the political maneuvering of the Israeli Government and the international Zionist establishment.
Hizbullah is an active social and political organization with wide influence in Lebanon, especially in the Southern Lebanese Shiite stronghold, and has proven that a popular movement can make a big different in the political and military equations in the area, relying on a strong faith in the mission that they have bestowed upon themselves and a discipline and tightly controlled organizational acumen that is impregnable. Unlike most of the modern Moslem activist groups, which have gained media prominence and little effectiveness in achieving any major strides in the projection of Jihad in its truest manifestations, Hizbullah has proven that Islam is far more than random poorly calculated suicide missions that are more the result of frustration than effective confrontation.
Moreover the obvious projection of a moderate Islamic image goes a long way in dispelling some of the harm that may have been done by radical extremist groups, with dubious backgrounds and questionable approaches to delivering the Islamic message. In the resistance battle against the illegal occupation of Southern Lebanon, Hizbullah carried out a series of successful hit and run blows against strategic positions held by the Israeli forces in the Bika'a and other areas of Southern Lebanon inflicting casualties and destroying vital occupational infrastructure with state of the arts surveillance systems and other sophisticated defense installations.

Show the world
As Hizbullah carried out these raids, they did not forget to make use of the video camera to show the world the deadly precision of their attacks and thus dispel the myth that the Israeli Defense Forces are not vulnerable to any defeat. Such dramatic use of simple media helped to raise the popularity of the indefatigable resistance movement in Lebanon and showed the meekness of the IDF with all of its state of the art technology and preparedness.
In addition, any Israeli efforts to thwart the claims of Hizbullah were quickly dispelled and thus ensured that Hizbullah's credibility is unquestionable. During all these resistance operations, Hizbullah was able to project the movement as a determined and persevering foe against the Israelis with far more credibility than even their Israeli foes and all their supporters throughout the world. Even the Israelis themselves had to acknowledge the credibility of Hizbullah, for this observer remembers that Ehud Barak, the former Prime Minister of Israel, was asked in a CNN interview about a certain claim made by the untiring leader of Hizbullah, Barak could only say: “If Hassan Nasrullah said that, then it is bound to be true!”
Every time the leader of Hizbullah makes a public speech, many of the Arabs at the grassroots level are excited by the strong vocal disdain he has for the Israelis, while enjoying the obvious contempt for the ineffectiveness of most of the Arab regimes in meeting their real national obligations towards their fellow Arabs in Palestine and Southern Lebanon, who have been subject to ongoing persecution and suffering under a merciless chauvinistic occupation by one of the most ferocious “nationalist” movements of modern times, which manifested the evil Zionist creed that disrespects all the moral principles that have been engrained in the behavior of modern nations.
Anyone who has any illusions about the Zionist movement being an innocent nationalist effort has not had a chance to see all the human rights violations the Israeli regime has openly carried out or facilitated, from the massacre in the innocent village of Deir Yasin in 1948 to Qana in 1996, in which hundreds of innocent civilians were butchered by Israeli forces, while in their sleep. In addition, the obvious contempt for international legitimacy and international community concern for the plight of the victims of ongoing persecution and suffering by the Israelis in the West Bank and Gaza does not lend credence to this claim of innocence.

Serious menace
Thus Hizbullah was able to prove to be a serious menace to the occupiers and the Israelis realized that further successes by Hizbullah are bound to dispel the myths that the Israelis continue to deceive world public opinion with. The Israelis pulled out of Southern Lebanon unconditionally and frantically, which for most Arabs meant that Hizbullah has been more successful than all the Arab regimes with all the muscle at their disposal (which Hassan Nasrullah rightly says is actually used to keep the Arab people under the tyrannical rule of their rulers).
With the Israelis out of Lebanon, Hizbullah continued to score on the political and strategic arena, while at the same time checking any efforts by the Israelis to present any serious challenge to Hizbullah's capability at defending Lebanon's sovereignty over the freed territories. Thus we have the well conducted operation a couple of weeks ago against the Israeli “encroaching” tractor (more on Israeli encroaching tractors in future articles), which was just a reminder that Hizbullah remains alert and prepared to counter any threat or intimidation by the Israelis. To soften the blow, the Israelis then succumbed to the prisoner exchange, in the fervent hope that they can have a respite from Hizbullah activities, while they continue their pogrom in the West Bank and Gaza.