No Peace in Lebanon, No Peace in whole Middle East !!
By: Elias Bejjani
December 14/2005

One can only condemn the shameful and horrific attack on Lebanon's freedom, sovereignty, and independence  that robbed us of one of the country's most ardent defenders. The voice of Lebanon's prominent journalist, politician and MP Gibran Tueni was brutally and cowardly silenced on Monday when a car bomb took his life and the lives of three of his bodyguards, and injured more than thirty others who happened to be near the site of the attack.
The free Lebanese in Lebanon and the Diaspora hold the Baathist Syrian regime and its Lebanese and Palestinian security-militia remnants that are still active in Lebanon fully responsible for this act of cowardice. They are also the perpetrators of all
crimes and human rights atrocities that have been systematically obliterating every shred of Lebanese civility and decency for the past thirty years.
This new horrible crime is a clear manifestation of Lebanon's urgent and immediate need for the assistance of the international community and the free world. There can be no more delays. The rape of Lebanon has gone on far too long. The remaining clauses of the UN resolution 1559 as pertains to the disarming and dismantling of all Lebanese and non Lebanese militias
and the sole deployment of the Lebanese army on Lebanon's border with its two neighboring countries, Syria and Israel, must be swiftly, fully and concretely implemented.
 In the interim, we caution that simply hoping to maintain the status quo in Lebanon and in the region is a potential powder keg, a disaster simply waiting to happen. Peace must be permanent, just and comprehensive in Lebanon and throughout the Middle
 East. Real peace necessarily encompasses the staunch defense of the rights, liberties, and democratic freedoms of all.
 Real democratic values and freedom cannot be nurtured and cherished in the presence of private mini-states and cantons within the state of Lebanon, as is today the status quo imposed by those Lebanese and non-Lebanese private militias still operating in the mindset of war and aggression. The sole legitimate authority of the Lebanese state must be allowed to take root and spread in South Lebanon, in the southern suburbs of Beirut, in the Palestinian camps and in several other Lebanese regions that are under the full control of the made in Baathist Syria, Lebanese and Palestinian armed militias.
The evil mind and bloodstained hands that pushed the remote control button that detonated Gebran Tueni's armored car on Monday as he was passing through "Al Mukalles area" in East Beirut targeted not only Tueni, but all of Lebanon. While Lebanon grieves the tremendous and senseless loss, the nation did not die with Tueni. It emerges stronger than ever. Its constituents and its identity unified and galvanized, bruised but not beaten, hopeful, not hopeless.
Today, Lebanon's existence, sovereignty, principle of coexistence, diversity, stability and future made a bold step forward. Lebanese citizens and their free patriotic leaders who are honestly seeking to rebuild the state of laws and institutions, and to embrace and enforce the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and spread the authority of the state via its own forces
on the totality of its land have not been silenced.
This revolting crime is but one of a continuing series that persists in its desire to plant discord in Lebanon, the "Home of the Cedars" by forces that wish this beautiful and ancient country ill. It is part of the latest chain of assassinations and explosions that has targeted leaders from all Lebanese groups and in the Christian regions of "North Metn and the Keserwan".
The Lebanese of the Diaspora express their deepest regrets to the victims and call on the international community, represented by the UN, and on the Lebanese authorities to apprehend the criminals and identify their supporters. Hopefully the punishment will be just and swift. Terrorist acts will end in Lebanon only when the state's security organizations are "Lebanized" and purged of their Syrian residues, and when all illegal weapons are confiscated from all armed militias.
Lebanese peace and democracy advocates offer their condolences to the Tueni family and to all of the victims' families. We vow that their deaths will not be in vain. While our beloved homeland Lebanon cries for the martyrs she has lost, she remains steadfast in her message of peace, and in the ingenuity of her people to rise above the abyss. To her leaders and citizens who believe in freedom and democracy, we reaffirm our support and our relentless faith in achieving a resounding victory against all forces of terrorism, fundamentalism and ignorance.
The international community should know by now that without peace, stability and democracy in Lebanon, there will be no lasting peace or productive democracy in all of the Middle East. There is a real danger that should terrorism and fundamentalism prevail and flourish in the Middle East, the West is likely to suffer the consequences unless the United Nations
 immediately and boldly intervenes to take custody of Lebanon in both the judicial and security domains.

Elias Bejjani
*Human Rights activist, journalist & political commentator.
*Spokesman for the Canadian Lebanese Human Rights Federation (CLHRF)
*Media Chairman for the Canadian Lebanese Coordinating Council (LCCC)
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