by Fabio Giuseppe Carlo Carisio for VT Mediterranean
While the spiritual leader of Shia Muslims in Lebanon, Hezbollah Secretary General Sayyed Hasan Nasrallah preaches unity among religious confessions, a former member of the Knesset (Israel’s one-chamber parliament) thanks God for the explosion that devastated Beirut, leaving a provisional toll of 158 deaths.
In this contrasting approach, we can measure the will of the Islamic exponent to sooth public emotion after the street riots that broke out in Beirut due to the outbreak of an ammonium nitrate deposit, which some believe was triggered by an external attack.
While former Israeli parliamentarian Moshe Feiglin posted on Facebook that he thanked God that the deadly blast took place in Beirut, and claimed it was just in time for Tu B’Av, a festival of love which has become a romantic Jewish holiday for dancing, handing out flowers and singing. The media MEMO (Middle East Monitor) reported.
«Today is Tu B’Av, a day of joy, and a true and huge thank you to G-d and all the geniuses and heroes really (!) who organized for us this wonderful celebration in honor of the day of love» wrote Feiglin, leader of the libertarian Zionist party Zehut, and former member of Likud, the party of Benjamin Netanyahu, which he represented in the Knesset between 2013 and 2015.
The former parliamentarian made even heavier allusions in an interview with a local radio, where he spoke of a nuclear bomb and a possible Israeli responsibility, among the hypotheses circulating about the mysterious and terrible massacre.
«You don’t really believe that this was some messy fuel warehouse, yeah? Do you understand that this hell was supposed to fall on us as a rain of missiles?! I have some experience with explosives. The largest explosion I took part in was 2.5 tons of TNT» said the former Israeli parliamentarian as reported by MEMO.
What we saw yesterday at the Port of Beirut was much bigger. The destructive effect (without the radiation) was like a nuclear bomb – added Feiglin – If it was us, and I hope it was us, then we should be proud of it, and with that we will create a balance of terror. By avoiding saying it’s us. We are putting ourselves on the dark side of morality. We are all allowed to rejoice that it exploded in the port of Beirut and not in Tel Aviv».
The statements of the leader of Hezbollah are of the opposite tenor.
«We are before a major humanitarian and national catastrophe at all levels» Sayyed Hasan Nasrallah, a legendary figure in Lebanon because he is believed to be a descendant of Muhammad, said in a televised speech on Friday, after expressing condolences to the relatives of the victims and hoping for a speedy recovery of the wounded and the discovery of the numerous missing.
«There are more than 150 martyrs; the majority of them are Lebanese, with a remarkable number of Syrians and national from of different countries» the explosion hit the port of Beirut right in the area of some foreign embassies, severely affecting the Syrian and Australian embassies.
Hezbollah is now a ruling party in Lebanon in support of the Shiite premier Hassan Diab, who is also supported by the majority Shiite party Amal and the block Christian of the Free Patriots Movement, led by the former Foreign Minister Gebran Bassil, which also includes the President of the Republic Michel Aoun, a former army general.
PILOTED RIOTS IN BEIRUT
Aoun himself ended up in the crosshairs of the rioters who, since October 2019, have been contesting unidentified episodes of corruption (certainly much less serious than those that emerged in Italy with the PalamaraGate which uncovered plots between magistrates and politicians without a single arrest) and the ongoing economic crisis.
As highlighted in other articles on the protests piloted by CANVAS and western secret services, the financial collapse of the country was actually caused as in Venezuela by the US sanctions against Lebanese banks considered to be financing Hezbollah, which Washington claims is a terrorist organization because of its alliance with the Shiite Pasdaran of Iran.
«Beirut blast has been completely obliterated. This would cause major economic losses. This explosion affected all the Lebanese with all their sectarian affiliations. Beirut is city of all the Lebanese and represents all segments of Lebanese society. We must express sympathy, love and solidarity with each other» Nasrallah added, as reported by the Lebanese media Al Manar.
Nasrallah hailed the stances taken and relief aids sent by the Arab and foreign governments as well as resistance movements to support Lebanon, despite the siege imposed by the United States, and pointed out that Hezbollah views the visit of the French President positively, as it comes in the context of helping and uniting the Lebanese.
«We wish US imposed its siege just on Hezbollah, not on all the Lebanese» he said.
But yesterday, on the “Saturday of anger” a few hundred rioters skilfully trained in urban warfare like those of the 2005 Cedar Revolution that still boasts by CANVAS (the self-styled anti-violence center in Belgrade financed by the American counter-intelligence of the Central Intelligence Agency), Hezbollah, Aoun and Prime Minister Diab were targeted with violent protests.
In the predominantly Christian neighborhood of Achrafieh, a large group of demonstrators – including many army veterans – occupied the historic Bustros building, home to the Foreign Ministry, and immediately proclaimed it as the headquarters of the rioters.
On the facade of the building, which had been damaged in the explosion on Tuesday, large red banners depicting the clenched fist with the words “Beirut capital of the revolution” were spread. The army then freed the seat believed to be the symbol of President Aoun.
Lebanese police arrested 20 people. Among the agents, according to a statement quoted by the site of the newspaper L’Orient le Jour, there are 70 injured, but one of them would later die. Last night the Lebanese Red Cross had provided a total toll of 238 wounded, of which 63 were hospitalized and 175 treated on the spot.
HEZBOLLAH DENY AMMUNITION IN THE PORT
Amid calls for early elections, premier Hassan Diab assured in a speech to the nation that, “The massacre in the port of Beirut will not go unpunished.”
“All those responsible for the port will be investigated,” he added. Diab called on political parties to resolve the country’s crisis in two months, otherwise there will be early elections. Lebanese Information Minister, Manal Abdul Samad, announced his resignation today, according to Lebanese media.
Protesters pointed the finger at Hezbollah for the ammonium nitrate storage warehouse from which the fatal explosion would have started, although as reported by Gospa News, multiple other military sources claim that there have been more triggers due to bombs or missiles.
«Just after the explosion, some local and Arab TV channels as well as social media pages adopted an alleged scenario which claims that Beirut port’s warehouse which exploded contained missiles or ammunition for Hezbollah. Although official sources denied the presence of missiles in the port and confirmed that nitrate is used for agricultural and industrial purposes, they (local and Arab TV channels) insisted that the ammonium nitrate had been stored by Hezbollah for 6 years in order to blame the party for the explosion – highlighted Nasrallah – I categorically deny the claim that Hezbollah has arms cache, ammunition or anything else in the port.»
President Aoun had previously stated that all hypotheses were possible: the accident but also a bomb or a missile for an external attack.
Sayyed Nasrallah stressed that Hezbollah neither runs the Beirut port nor does it interfere in its administration, adding that the Resistance knows more about the Haifa Port in Occupied Palestine than the Beirut Port.
«As a Resistance, it’s our duty to know what’s going on in Haifa Port, but not Beirut Port».
RALLY IN JERUSALEM AGAINST NETANYAHU
While the demonstrations in Lebanon have come under the attention of the Western media, only Russia Today has highlighted the protests in Israel.
«Footage shows officers dragging away demonstrators outside Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s residence. Several people were detained in Jerusalem after a thousands-strong rally.
A clip from RT’s Ruptly video agency shows scuffles between activists and police officers on Sunday as they attempt to disrupt a sit-in at the Israeli PM’s official residence in central Jerusalem, that has been become the focus of frequent anti-government demonstrations» wrote Russia Today.
After midnight, police demanded demonstrators to disperse, then started to remove by force those who refused to leave. According to The Times of Israel, at least three people were detained for “disturbing public order and attacking officers.”
Demonstrations have been taking place across Israel for the past several weeks – the largest protests since 2011 – over the corruption charges against Netanyahu and what critics perceive as his government’s poor handling of the coronavirus crisis.
Fabio Giuseppe Carlo Carisio
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