Blowback in Lebanon
Posted on Jun 22, 2007
Truthdig contributor Reese Erlich connects the blowback from American meddling in the Mideast to the recent violence in Lebanon, where a Palestinian militant group has been fighting with the Lebanese army.
The brutal fighting inside Palestinian refugee camps in Lebanon, which has claimed 140 lives so far, seems incomprehensible to anyone not steeped in the intricacies of Palestinian politics. But behind the killing lurks an urgent question: Is Fatah al Islam—the organization responsible for much of the fighting—a pawn of Syria, as charged by the U.S. and some Lebanese? Or is it an unintended outgrowth of a U.S.-backed plan to develop a Sunni counterweight to Hezbollah?
During a recent trip to the Middle East, I conducted exclusive interviews with Palestinian and Syrian government and intelligence officials as well as independent sources. All of them insisted that while some leaders of Fatah al Islam did indeed live in Syria, those leaders broke from a Syrian-supported group in 2006, well before the current Lebanese turmoil.