Hezbollah leader Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah delivered a live speech via a video link during an Iftar
While he was talking a clash broke out in Burj Abi Haidar, ( a Beirut suburb) during which Mohammed Fawwaz, a Hezbollah’s official was killed . Nasrallah never mentioned the incident during his speech
As expected he talked about , the Resistance, The Special Tribunal for Lebanon, arming the Lebanese army, the spies and the recent protests over power and water outages .
We can face dangers (no matter what they are) through moral support for the Resistance.
The biggest threat we’ve been facing in Lebanon is the Israeli threat.
Israeli [threats], the Zionist project and Tel Aviv’s ambitions on our land, gas, oil and water are the external dangers.
It is our fate that there is an entity founded on [invading others’ lands]. We now have a rich experience, after all these years, in how a small country with limited capabilities can defend its sovereignty and restore its land when facing the strongest army in the Middle East.
We, in Lebanon, have the richest military and political experience. This made-in-Lebanon experience, which has created a balance of fear and deterrence with the enemy.
Following the 2006 July War in Lebanon, the world studied the Resistance’s victory because the experience was [based] on a formula that was not clear during the [past few years], which is the formula of [the unity] of the Resistance, army and people.
This new, unique and special formula has succeeded in Lebanon… and we are concerned about maintaining it, improving its elements, and improving [these elements’] relations with each other.
The Lebanese territory of Ghajar is [recognized as an area that belongs] to Lebanon and all international attempts to convince Israel to withdraw from Ghajar claim that returning the land to Lebanon will weaken the Resistance and Hezbollah. Only the Resistance led Israel out of Lebanon.
Arming the Lebanese army
In Lebanon, what we say does not reflect our convictions . We say that we all agree on empowering the Lebanese army. The issue of arming the army was brought up again after the Adaisseh clashes, which have many connotations. The Adaisseh incident revealed a very important thing, which is that the arms that the [US] gives to the army and the security forces come with a clear condition over their use. The [US] supposes that these arms are not given to the army to fight Israel or to defend itself, but to settle internal issues that the US calls facing terrorism. ( This is a reference to the fact that the US considers Hezbollah a terrorist organization)
The Adaisseh incident revealed this. The controversy over whether to arm the Lebanese army started between the US Congress, Department of Defense and State Department . The Congress requested an investigation to know whether the arms used in the clashes were given by the US.
I think that the US will continue to arm the army. The excuse being used in the Congress is that if Washington want Lebanon to be under control , the Lebanese army must be empowered and armed, because not arming it would place Lebanon in Hezbollah’s hands.
Donations [no matter how many there are] cannot arm the Resistance. The same applies to the Lebanese army, but these donations have a moral [significance], and it is a good step.
All Arab countries say that they love Lebanon … I suggest that the government define the type of weapons (the army needs), and we’d tell the Arab countries: We don’t want money, but we rather want weapons. I suggest that Lebanese delegations go to Arab countries to request arms after the army’s needs are specified .
Arming the army cannot wait for the approval of the 2010 state budget. This a tense and exceptional situation that cannot wait for studies.
I addressed this issue during the 2009 parliamentary elections. If the opposition had won the elections and formed the cabinet, then the countries arming the Lebanese army would have stopped doing so. And when I suggested to resort to our friends in Syria and Iran for armaments , all hell broke loose.
Now, all the political forces are saying that they will accept the army to be armed without conditions, and they have no conditions for Iran. I hope that our brotherly minister will give an official request and Hezbollah will work its hardest to benefit from its friendship with Iran to help arm the Lebanese army. And I am talking about aid, and not buying weapons .
I think Iran, which has helped. Lebanon for 28 years, ever since the 1982 Israeli invasion will not skimp when it comes to any possible help to the Lebanese army. This is something we can do together. This is in reference to the creation of Hezbollah by the Iranian Revolutionary Guards in 1982 )
Special Tribunal for Lebanon
We addressed the issue of the STL’s false witnesses in the cabinet, and the government appointed Justice Minister [Ibrahim Najjar] to study the issue. That was a good step.
Does the [Special Tribunal for Lebanon (STL)] have any jurisdiction over the Lebanese judiciary to tell it what [to do]? We must know. I want to ask the government how the [issue of the STL’s] false witnesses should be resolved. I do not want to engage in an argument on the [issue] of the false witnesses, because no matter what is said, [the fact] that the investigation was misled will not change. Someone did mislead the investigation and someone is behind the [false witnesses].
Who is behind the false witnesses? Why do some [people] in Lebanon want to hide them? If you do not want to punish them, do not. But [I ask] for the sake of truth and justice. Who fabricated them and misled the investigation for four years?
The cabinet agreed to study the file. Let us see what [Najjar] will [achieve].
About the evidence that was submitted to the STL. I held a press conference presenting evidence [which implicates Israel in the 2005 assassination of former PM Rafik Hariri] and all hell broke loose. People were saying that [what I presented] was not irrefutable evidence [proving Israel was behind the assassination]. I said beforehand that what I was presenting was not irrefutable evidence, but should change the course of the investigation.
Some [March 14] politicians have said that Hezbollah’s evidence submittal recognizes the STL. No. I will not be dragged into saying what [information I have] and what [data I have] that is related to the STL and the international investigation. The current [situation] implies that I am not concerned about the investigation and the tribunal. I will [speak on the issue] at the right time.
If the Lebanese judiciary wants to cooperate and [work] with us, then hopefully we will [work with it].
In 2006, some [Israeli] agents confessed that they allowed into Lebanon a team of Israeli commandos, who stayed here for a few days and then left. Today I ask, why haven’t these agents been interrogated again to uncover whether the commandos were present in the country [when any explosions or assassinations occurred]. ( For the record no one exactly knows whom the STL has interrogated )
The Lebanese authorities can get such facts. The agents are in their custody, not mine.
( According to Ya Libnan legal advisers there is no such a thing as a false witness before indictments are made . Only the courts during the trial can determine whether a witness is for real or false. At this stage no body knows who will be indicted, despite the fact that Nasrallah has revealed that some members of the party will be indicted. Such information is not coming from STL …such information is most probably assumptions or extrapolations coming from Hezbollah members that were interrogated by the Investigators. The trials will start after the indictments are made . There are 12 judges , 4 of them are Lebanese )
We currently assume that Lebanon is waging a daily security war on Israeli spies. In my last speech , I said that there are more than 100 spies, and the official ministries said that there more than 15o. It is correct to assume that we are waging a serious security war with Israel. Judicial follow up is necessary, and rulings must be issued and implemented.
Implementing [these rulings] will stop or [greatly] affect many Israeli collaborators’ actions. Many started spying after 2005 or 2006. There are many who have been collaborating for years, while many were recently recruited and many have yet to be recruited. What will deter people is not revenge, but punishments.
I call for immediate justice. An [Israeli collaborator] will do harm to himself and it is not his family’s fault. It is the collaborator’s fault only, and his family and political party or institution should not be looked at in a negative way. ( This was understood to be in reference to Hezbollah ally Free patriotic Movement . A Senior FPM official retired Lebanese army officer Fayez Karam was arrested on charges of spying for Israel .)
If spies and collaborators are found in the army, does that mean the whole army is a spy?
I am not trying to brag about Hezbollah, but the party has an internal structure and a popular base. We do not have files on those who are in our popular base – our supporters and followers – and there might be infiltrators among them. But in the internal structure of Hezbollah, we have files on each of our members. [We fought] daily with the Israelis, who wanted to know where we had storages and camps, what our intentions were, what our tactics were. And for that reason, Hezbollah, for 28 years had a branch called ‘fighting espionage’ to combat infiltration in the party. This is the strongest apparatus.
-When I say that Hezbollah has not been infiltrated up until now, I am not showing off. I base my statement on facts. We are preparing for a future press conference to discuss the issue . (According Lebanese media the Lebanon’s Internal Security Forces informed Hezbollah last July of the names of three senior party members suspected of collaborating with Israel).
The Resistance is secure, and if it were not, then it would not have been victorious in the 2006 July War.
Protests over Water and electricity outages
As for the electricity and water issues, there is a [serious] problem in Lebanon. [In the beginning the country had electricity issues] and we are now [informed] that the country may also suffer water problems. This is a real problem, and it is not new. Neither the current minister can be held responsible for it nor the former… We do not want to challenge [anyone’s] responsibilities. ( Both ministers are members of the Free Patriotic Movement which is closely allied with Hezbollah)
There is an electricity problem in the country, which worsened due to the serious climate issue. This is a problem for stable countries that [dedicate] huge budgets for energy [sources].
I read some statements that [some power-cut] protests are political. According to what I know, no March 8 or March 14 political parties stand behind these protests.
It was also said that some protests are a rehearsal by some political parties to overthrow the government. These statements are a reference to us, and they are nonsense. All of us in the cabinet have taken a decision to cooperate in order to face people’s crises.
There was a time when [March 8] wanted to [overthrow] the cabinet. It can now [overthrow] it in the parliament. It does not need the street. (According to observers , in his calculations Nasrallah must be counting on the vote MP Jumblatt’s Democratic gathering block )
We do not hide behind [people’s sufferings]. We have the courage to express out political [stances]. If anyone in the cabinet feels that they can no longer be a part of this cabinet, we will inform Prime Minister [Saad Hariri] of that.
No one is targeting the cabinet or Energy Minister [Gebran Bassil]. The issue now is that there is a problem in the country that we need to resolve. The cabinet approved of a plan that needs four years to be implemented. Taking a decision is not enough. The cost of exceptional measures is less than the economic, psychological and socials costs the country is tolerating. I join those calling on the cabinet to form a commission or hold an exceptional session to discuss with [Bassil new means] to [resolve the issue].
[We are worried] about what is going on in the street because we are afraid of intelligence [services] that might [trigger] clashes between the people, security forces and the Lebanese army. This will harm us all, especially the Resistance.
The first request to the cabinet is for it to meet and discuss suggestions. We all [should work] to [create an] emergency fund and an [advanced payment] to temporarily resolve the issue.
I call on people to be patient and calm and to not be dragged into [fights] in the street because it is useless. I fear that someone [will use] these spontaneous protest to drag the country into what it cannot handle.
I call on the cabinet to study and discuss a plan to build a peaceful nuclear plant to generate electricity in Lebanon. The water issue does not need a strategy, and we can resolve this issue in two sessions because we are heading toward a serious problem.
Power is needed to protect Lebanon. The golden formula to protects Lebanon is the one of the [unity] of the Resistance, army and people.
( According to observers Hezbollah and Amal neighborhoods refuse to pay for electricity and water . Bill collectors in Hezbollah and Amal strongholds have reportedly been subjected to attacks and many were killed or wounded.)