Lebanese security official ‘knew he was a Syrian target’

Wissam al-Hassan (pictured), the Lebanese intelligence chief killed in Friday’s terror attack in Beirut, was a known opponent to Syria’s Bashar al-Assad and had alerted allied opposition members to a number of Syrian threats, it emerged Saturday.

Wissam al-Hassan, a top Lebanese security official killed Friday in a Beirut car bombing, suspected the regime in neighbouring Syria of murdering his mentor, former prime minister Rafiq Hariri.

The grey-moustached general, 47, a Sunni Muslim, had sent his wife and children to Paris because he “knew he was a target,” said a Lebanese opposition leader hostile to the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

As intelligence chief of Lebanon’s police, the Internal Security Forces (ISF), Hassan dismantled Islamist networks in his country and shut down Israeli-linked spy operations.

But his master stroke was the August 9 arrest, in which ISF played a central role, of former Lebanese information minister Michel Samaha, suspected of planning attacks in Lebanon’s north at the behest of Syrian intelligence official Ali Mamlouk.

Hassan had already pointed the finger at Damascus, not only for the Hariri assassination in 2005 but also for a series of killings over the following three years of Lebanese figures opposed to Syria.

His ISF were deeply involved in seeking the arrest of those responsible.

“They targeted General Hassan because he arrested Michel Samaha and he was a security official who feared nothing,” said opposition politician Samir Geagea.

Syrian Information Minister Omran al-Zohbi condemned what he called the “terrorist, cowardly” attack.

Born in northern Lebanon’s Koura region, Hassan entered the police academy in 1983.

Later responsible for protocol, he was often at Hariri’s side.

The prime minister’s murder, as he drove along the waterfront, sparked an international outcry which forced the withdrawal of Syrian troops who occupied Lebanon during its civil war which ended in 1990.

No one has ever been tried for Hariri’s murder but a UN-backed tribunal indicted four members of the Shiite Muslim group Hezbollah, which now dominates the Lebanese government and is allied to Damascus.

After Hariri’s death, Hassan took on the position he held until his own murder on Friday.

ISF officers described him as “the man for difficult jobs” but also one in the shadows.

When he died, he was travelling in an unmarked car without a convoy, something his killers must have known because they attacked him in an alley with a car bomb that waited for him to pass, a government official said.

But Hassan “moved with exceptional security measures,” the source added.

Officials said seven other people also died in the blast, although the ISF and Red Cross gave a lower overall toll of three dead on Saturday.

“We have lost a pillar of security but we are not going to give up because we must protect the security of the country,” said the ISF chief, General Ashraf Rifi.

According to Geagea, himself a target for assassination last April, “General Hassan alerted us every time to the threats against” members of the opposition hostile to Damascus.

The “14 March” opposition coalition has been targeted about a dozen times since 2005, Geagea said.

Asked whether Syria was behind the attack on Hassan, he replied: “Who else could it be?”

France 24

  • Lebanon1o452

    all criminals and traitors know they will be hunted one day

    • nagy_michael2

      so bashar, nassrallah, raad, qassem, aoun, qandil,wahab and you should be hunted one day. i agree.

      • Lebanon10452

        i see this hypocrite humanist 5thdrawer likes the fact i will be hunted; first i reassure you, you and her and all the little people in this blog: are too minute to hunt me; you need to bring your bosses, little change like you  peh, will pass like a wind, broken wind…. further 5th is revealing her fiftieth talent: secret services; hahaha; she is giving us a value judgement on this killed person hassan something i forgot his name; hahaha, i would like to know on what basis and what criteria is she relying on to say this guy(who built a state within the state and behaving like the gestapo did) did his job properly or is she just echoeing her masters voices!!!! parroting is a better word. Maybe that is democracy for her… maybe she is one of his fan club (we heard he was a womaniser having seven wives, salafism allows polygamy) since he was building the nucleus of a salafi state in the north by dispatching 4000 salafis to the north

        • jim dandy

           maybe you and your boyfriend broke up so now you hate normal good folk nas will be caught and hung in public in Lebanon .my prediction .then you can have his hole

  • Lebanon1o452

    all criminals and traitors know they will be hunted one day

    • nagy_michael2

      so bashar, nassrallah, raad, qassem, aoun, qandil,wahab and you should be hunted one day. i agree.

      • Lebanon10452

        i see this hypocrite humanist 5thdrawer likes the fact i will be hunted; first i reassure you, you and her and all the little people in this blog: are too minute to hunt me; you need to bring your bosses, little change like you  peh, will pass like a wind, broken wind…. further 5th is revealing her fiftieth talent: secret services; hahaha; she is giving us a value judgement on this killed person hassan something i forgot his name; hahaha, i would like to know on what basis and what criteria is she relying on to say this guy(who built a state within the state and behaving like the gestapo did) did his job properly or is she just echoeing her masters voices!!!! parroting is a better word. Maybe that is democracy for her… maybe she is one of his fan club (we heard he was a womaniser having seven wives, salafism allows polygamy) since he was building the nucleus of a salafi state in the north by dispatching 4000 salafis to the north

        • jim dandy

           maybe you and your boyfriend broke up so now you hate normal good folk nas will be caught and hung in public in Lebanon .my prediction .then you can have his hole

  • Amine123

    I hope Bashar rut in hell, they should cut him to small pieces when they catch him for the crime and murders he committed, does he expect to rule the country even if he win?? he nearly destroyed everything and noone in the world will even consider him as a legitimate ruler except Russia and Iran inwhich ultimately the people will revolt and pursue freedom from the tyrants in both countries

  • Amine123

    I hope Bashar rut in hell, they should cut him to small pieces when they catch him for the crime and murders he committed, does he expect to rule the country even if he win?? he nearly destroyed everything and noone in the world will even consider him as a legitimate ruler except Russia and Iran inwhich ultimately the people will revolt and pursue freedom from the tyrants in both countries

  • Lebanon1o452

    shaklo shakl khanzir ma3louf

    • nagy_michael2

      Lebanon1o452 why don’t shut the hell up and respect the dead. you and syrians monsters and their allies in lebanon keep killing in order to stay in control. someday your khanzir nassrallah, wahab, AOun, Qandil and Raad and bashar and his relatives will be dragged in the streets. You will not have your ways forever. You will be killed like animals you are. The man protected Lebanon not just one sect or one person. He uncovered many secret lebanese israeli spy networks. But you assholes ignored it and made it all look it was Hezbollah. He was a great man and Lebanon lost a great one among the greats. May Allah bless his soul. God be with his family during these difficult times. May God bring his wrath over the evil doers like you who wishes nothing but evil and destruction. you’re a scum and a lebanese traitor..go to hell you bastard.

      • dateam

        with all due respect may he rest in peace but as head of the intelligence in lebanon how many key people died on his watch? where was the protection afforded them? gmayell as a minister had virtually no protection they assasinated him in broad daylight in his home town and disapeeared? when hariri was killed he was off that day taking an exam…francois elhajj army commander??? wisam eid travelloing alone??? dont be in denial that there was things that wewre not right….why did ziad baroud resign as interior minister at the time???

        • 5thDrawer

          No-one denies there were things that were not right, dateam … but the man did his JOB.
          His position puts him under the directions of ‘The State’. In this case, Lebanon as a whole. He runs a department looking for truths … wherever they may pop up … in defence of ‘The State’.
           Lebanon’s man.
          Not his fault if the whole place and the people under whom he serves are screwed up. His job is to find out who attacks Lebanon, and to stop them. To know who is against ‘The State’.
          And we should admit he did his job.
          If ‘The State’ had been able to change, he would still have been for ‘The State’. It’s that simple.
          What he eats for breakfast or how he ties his shoes has no bearing on it.

        • jim dandy

           nobody is perfect pal.he paid the ultimate sacrifice for what people to criticize him after he’s dead go after Scuzzrallah instead

      • Lebanon10452

        just drawing the water closet; shi bikharri

        • jim dandy

           smile where you got it last

    • Hannibal

      red line ya 3ashertaleefwu2arba3miyyewutneynwu5amsiin…….

      • Lebanon10452

        no red lines; this is war and in war people are killed; i would shed tears on innocent people or passers by who were killed by accident not on a criminal who killed hundreds of innocent people in his jails while interrogating them the gestapo way; where is this hypocrite 5thfreedom fighter, how can she support a tyrant like this or do we have two weights two measures? tyrants who share our political plans are angels and angels who fight against us are tyrants!!!!

        • jim dandy

           we are running out of heavy duty drugs. can you send some of what you are on so we can be stupid too

    • Lebanon10452

      wa mou’awwas bi tizo

      • jim dandy

         i guess the doors fell off the nuthouse .did sombody say insane in the membrane

  • Lebanon1o452

    shaklo shakl khanzir ma3louf

    • nagy_michael2

      Lebanon1o452 why don’t shut the hell up and respect the dead. you and syrians monsters and their allies in lebanon keep killing in order to stay in control. someday your khanzir nassrallah, wahab, AOun, Qandil and Raad and bashar and his relatives will be dragged in the streets. You will not have your ways forever. You will be killed like animals you are. The man protected Lebanon not just one sect or one person. He uncovered many secret lebanese israeli spy networks. But you assholes ignored it and made it all look it was Hezbollah. He was a great man and Lebanon lost a great one among the greats. May Allah bless his soul. God be with his family during these difficult times. May God bring his wrath over the evil doers like you who wishes nothing but evil and destruction. you’re a scum and a lebanese traitor..go to hell you bastard.

      • dateam

        with all due respect may he rest in peace but as head of the intelligence in lebanon how many key people died on his watch? where was the protection afforded them? gmayell as a minister had virtually no protection they assasinated him in broad daylight in his home town and disapeeared? when hariri was killed he was off that day taking an exam…francois elhajj army commander??? wisam eid travelloing alone??? dont be in denial that there was things that wewre not right….why did ziad baroud resign as interior minister at the time???

        • 5thDrawer

          No-one denies there were things that were not right, dateam … but the man did his JOB.
          His position puts him under the directions of ‘The State’. In this case, Lebanon as a whole. He runs a department looking for truths … wherever they may pop up … in defence of ‘The State’.
           Lebanon’s man.
          Not his fault if the whole place and the people under whom he serves are screwed up. His job is to find out who attacks Lebanon, and to stop them. To know who is against ‘The State’.
          And we should admit he did his job.
          If ‘The State’ had been able to change, he would still have been for ‘The State’. It’s that simple.
          What he eats for breakfast or how he ties his shoes has no bearing on it.

        • jim dandy

           nobody is perfect pal.he paid the ultimate sacrifice for what people to criticize him after he’s dead go after Scuzzrallah instead

      • Lebanon10452

        just drawing the water closet; shi bikharri

        • jim dandy

           smile where you got it last

    • Hannibal

      red line ya 3ashertaleefwu2arba3miyyewutneynwu5amsiin…….

      • Lebanon10452

        no red lines; this is war and in war people are killed; i would shed tears on innocent people or passers by who were killed by accident not on a criminal who killed hundreds of innocent people in his jails while interrogating them the gestapo way; where is this 5thfreedom fighter, how can she support a tyrant like this or do we have two weights two measures? tyrants who share our political plans are angels and angels who fight against us are tyrants!!!!

        • jim dandy

           we are running out of heavy duty drugs. can you send some of what you are on so we can be stupid too

    • Lebanon10452

      wa mou’awwas bi tizo

      • jim dandy

         i guess the doors fell off the nuthouse .did sombody say insane in the membrane

  • Fauzia45

    He had a difficult job and he knew it and he paid a high price!As they say the highest price is truth!!!!

  • Fauzia45

    He had a difficult job and he knew it and he paid a high price!As they say the highest price is truth!!!!