jul 272015
 

BEIRUT — The talk now is all about whether Syria and Iraq will end up as divided states. The impetus for such speculation derives firstly from the latest Saudi, Qatari and Turkish joint resolve to mount huge numbers of jihadists on Syria’s borders. According to two senior political figures I spoke to, up to 10,000+ Wahhabist/Salafists (predominantly An-Nusra/Al Qaeda) have been gathered by the intelligence services of these latter states, mostly non-Arabs from Chechnya, Turkmenistan, etc. Plainly, Washington is aware [lees verder]

nov 082012
 

In mid-October, a massive car bomb killed Wissam al-Hassan in downtown Beirut. The intelligence chief was buried as a hero and praised by the West for his help in investigating the 2005 assassination of former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri. Or was he a double agent, possibly also active sometimes for the Syrians? It’s a story of personal oaths of allegiance and clan loyalties, a story of war, betrayal and deceit, a story that could only be written about the Middle [lees verder]

nov 082012
 

The fallout from the assassination of Internal Security Forces (ISF) Information Branch chief Wissam al-Hassan nearly two weeks ago was very similar to that following the series of assassinations that has rocked Lebanon since 2005. Syria was blamed immediately, and those who expressed doubt were labeled collaborators. March 14 alluded to Hezbollah’s involvement as well. Lebanese Forces leader Samir Geagea even went as far as accusing Hezbollah directly. Jumping to conclusions prevents honest dialogue. In reality, prior to his death, [lees verder]