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Discussion Starter #1
Two contrasting scenarios:

Tel Aviv - Sharon making a speech, everyone in the audience has their head down in grief with three coffins of IDF troops that were killed in South Lebanon. Hezballah leader Nasrallah quoted on the night, "They [Israel] may be my enemy, but I respect them. They value their people's bodies, and for that I have the utmost respect!"

Beirut - Rejoice, victory and happiness. around 300 prisoners... for 3 dead bodies? As the French say, "chapeau bas". Hats down, to a political entity that can succeed in such a bargain. Whether you call them terrorists, no matter what you think of them Hezballah a 2nd time got it THEIR way! Hezballah recognized and legitimized?

They're more powerful than the Lebanese government, especially since they're backed by Damascus and Iran.

The questions to be addressed now, are what is Israel's future plans for Lebanon, Syria and Hezballah?

What is Hezballah's role in Lebanon from now on? It's dangerous to have a sectarian religious political party that is so powerful in a small country! If they were secular, it'd be alright, but they are Shi'ite Muslim and there is almost no way that they can ever appeal to Maronites, Orthodox, or Druzes.

Non-Muslims here in Lebanon fear Hezballah as attempting to make it an Islamic Republic. People criticize them for being against the 'concept of Lebanon' i.e. The National Pact of 1943 which lead to independence of the country and w/drawal of French mandate. Their criticism is based on the grounds of Hezballah allowing Syria to run political affairs of Lebanon. True Lebanon is not a democracy, since all decisions have to be approved by Damascus.

What bothers me most is when people brand Hezballah as terrorists, thugs and mafiosos. Firstly, these supposed 'thugs' and 'terrorists' freed 10% of the 10452 km2 occupied South Leb by the IDF. These supposed 'mafiosos' have set up hospitals, schools, and orphanages in South Lebanon and the poorer Beirut suburbs.

Here is what SHOULD be criticized:
- Hezballah's non-secular appeal.
- Not combatting the Palestinian groups in south Leb that have their own army and are running their own mini-state in Ain el Helwe camp
- Fighting in Shebaa Farms: territory on Leb-Syrian border which Lebanon WILLINGLY gave up to Syria after 1967 war. Basically the Syrians are letting Hezballah fight a war for them.
- Syria being indifferent to US pressure on political hegemony in Lebanon.

Based on these criticism, I think none of them are fair judgments to brand Hezballah as terrorists. If I were to sit here and make judgments about which Lebanese were terrorists, then I could say NOONE was excusable: Most Lebanese civilians during 1975-1991 had their own AK-47/Kalasnikovs hidden in their closet, there even were people with blood on their hands who ended up till this very day serving higher positions in Leb gov't and parliament. My point is, it's not illogical to sit there and say that Hezb are terrorists because of such and such reasons, because I can (and any other politically savy Lebanese) provide equally 'guilty' reasons for why, say PSP or Leb Forces can be branded terrorists! Sabra and Chatila anyone? Whether it was for a 'justifiable' cause is irrelevant, what happened in those camps is ETHICALLY and MORALLY UNACCEPTABLE. At the same time, the then PLO troops who killed according I.D weren't any less guilty...(between 1975-1982 PLO troops would stop people and kill them according to their religion)

sorry for straying off-topic a little, I just wanted to make my point clear...

One of the prisoners that was freed, Deirani, is a HAJJ. Basically a religious man who made the pilgramage to Mecca - a person with self-respect. He was beaten and RAPED for 15 years in Israeli prison. This is just ONE of the MANY atrocities one could come up with.

The mourning which took place in Tel-Aviv last Thursday doesn't even COMPARE to an OUNCE of the pain that Lebanese suffered in Khiam prison (which I visited myself and learned of the horrific details...)
 

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what is Israel's future plans for Lebanon, Syria and Hezballah?


May I reverse this question a little, what are Egypt's, Syria's, Saudi-Arabia's, Yemen's etc. future plans for Israel? ;)


How does Hezballah appeal to you, Stinkfist? I don't know enough about them so I can't give a full opinion, yet. For example, I didn't know they are responsible for building schools and hospitals, I only know them as a terrorist organization from the news.
 

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It is quite simple why this deal happened: Hezbollah does not have to win elections, Sharon does. Hezbullah does not have to calculate political cost in every decision they make, Sharon does. Hezbollah know that Tennebaumm guy they release probably knows sh!t all, Sharon doesn't.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Re: Re: The Hezballah-Israel prisoner swap-deal.

monte said:
what is Israel's future plans for Lebanon, Syria and Hezballah?


May I reverse this question a little, what are Egypt's, Syria's, Saudi-Arabia's, Yemen's etc. future plans for Israel? ;)


How does Hezballah appeal to you, Stinkfist? I don't know enough about them so I can't give a full opinion, yet. For example, I didn't know they are responsible for building schools and hospitals, I only know them as a terrorist organization from the news.
I come from a Beirut suburb where Hezballah are pretty much in charge. Hezballah don't appeal to me as an ideology since it is not in the interest of SECULAR LEBANON i.e. Lebanon for all sects and not a dominant one. I'm a Shi'ite Muslim myself, but I consider myself Lebanese first and foremost. The affairs and complaints of Lebanese Christian and Druze communities always tend to appeal to my concern and I like to debate with their political parties in university here because I think the only way Lebanon can function is if everyone forgets which 'turf' they're on and work on consensus.

The scars of the civil war are deep, but 12 years onward it's time to put away the bad memories...because if we keep on thinking of revenge based on passed events...Lebanon will get NOWHERE...and Syria will remain a hegemonic power here.

Nasrallah tries (not hard enough, IMO) to appeal to Christians by calling them 'brothers'...but always emphasizes the Islamist cause...rather than a NATIONAL cause. If he mentions national, he immediately reiterates Islam. This isn't a BAD thing, not at all, but non-Muslims will DEFINITELY have bias...morever, Lebanese mentality will always be biased to their own sect no matter what :rolleyes:

As for the religious debate, my POV on it is that religion is private institution, a personal thing between a person and his God, Priest/Rabbi/Sheikh...or whatever.

I'm for separation of 'church and state'.
 

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Fobal klub said:
Strange, if you would had been French, we would have had a thread with 300 replies in few days, with this last sentence;)
There is a difference between that and not allowing people of a certain faith to wear religious symbols. What france is doing is making a mockery out of democracy. It is a joke. How are you going to stop people wearing what they want to wear? throw them in jail? I am not anti-french i am anti-stupidity.
 

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Yeah Borba but that plan of the Frenchies only applies to public schools. Besides, I thought that many Ozzies had to wear a school uniform so... :tongue:

Stinkfist thanks for your elaborate post :)
 

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monte said:
Yeah Borba but that plan of the Frenchies only applies to public schools. Besides, I thought that many Ozzies had to wear a school uniform so... :tongue:

Stinkfist thanks for your elaborate post :)
Aye, but they can bloody well wear any religious symbols they want.
 

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I quote you 'How are you going to stop people wearing what they want to wear?'


Aye! my prada kids collection would've been worthless in AUS :tongue:


Once again it's about public schools, the French are just very much for equality, I don't see why it bothers others so much. It's not like anyone is 100% forbidden to wear these symbols since one can choose for another school as well. Oh, it's not like they can't wear a crucifix or whatever religious symbol anymore, unless its size is way out of proportion.
 

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monte said:
I quote you 'How are you going to stop people wearing what they want to wear?'


Aye! my prada kids collection would've been worthless in AUS :tongue:


Once again it's about public schools, the French are just very much for equality, I don't see why it bothers others so much. It's not like anyone is 100% forbidden to wear these symbols since one can choose for another school as well. Oh, it's not like they can't wear a crucifix or whatever religious symbol anymore, unless its size is way out of proportion.
Your "prada kids collection" (whatever that is) would have been very suitable because one does not have to wear a uniform through primary school and not all high schools require you to wear a uniform. France is a democracy is it not? So as a democracy one must have certain freedoms. One must be allowed to express ones religion. Equality? Sounds like communism to me.
 

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Borba said:
Your "prada kids collection" (whatever that is) would have been very suitable because one does not have to wear a uniform through primary school and not all high schools require you to wear a uniform. France is a democracy is it not? So as a democracy one must have certain freedoms. One must be allowed to express ones religion. Equality? Sounds like communism to me.

I was a kid in high school as well.

Anyway, can't you see that you are saying exactly what I am saying?

You say, NOT all high schools require you to wear a uniform in Australia.

I say, NOT all schools require you to take off large religious symbols in France. It's only the public ones, I don't know abuot your country but in my country they make up a third or so of all schools (i think). Hence there is freedom of choice, so thats why I am not really bothered by this plan.


I won't ruin Stinkfists thread any further ;)
 

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monte said:
I was a kid in high school as well.

Anyway, can't you see that you are saying exactly what I am saying?

You say, NOT all high schools require you to wear a uniform in Australia.

I say, NOT all schools require you to take off large religious symbols in France. It's only the public ones, I don't know abuot your country but in my country they make up a third or so of all schools (i think). Hence there is freedom of choice, so thats why I am not really bothered by this plan.


I won't ruin Stinkfists thread any further ;)
Over 70% of students attend public schools over here. I too am sorry for ruining this thread. :)
 
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