Elias Bejjani/Hezbollah’s Destructive Role in Lebanon: A Threat to Peace and Stability

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Hezbollah’s Destructive Role in Lebanon: A Threat to Peace and Stability
Elias Bejjani/October 19/2023

Lebanon has long been a nation beset by political strife, sectarian tensions, and a fragile balance of power. But amidst these complexities, one entity stands out as a particularly destructive force: Hezbollah. This Shiite militant group, with its dual identity as both a political party and a paramilitary organization, continues to sow the seeds of discord and violence within the country, threatening the very essence of Lebanon’s existence.

Hezbollah, which was founded in the early 1980s with Iranian and Syrian support, has since evolved into a powerful and well-armed military force. Its actions, both inside and outside Lebanon, have earned it the label of a terrorist organization by a number of countries, including the United States and many in the European Union. But the true cost of Hezbollah’s actions is not merely measured in the formal designations it carries; it is measured in the pain and suffering inflicted on the Lebanese people and the erosion of the nation’s sovereignty.

One of the most pressing concerns regarding Hezbollah is its military wing’s activities. The group has been responsible for numerous acts of terrorism, including bombings, kidnappings, and rocket attacks. Its military actions, often serving as proxies for foreign powers, have dragged Lebanon into regional conflicts and compromised the security of its own citizens. The scars of the 2006 Lebanon War still remain, a testament to the havoc Hezbollah can wreak on the country.

Moreover, Hezbollah’s close alignment with Iran has turned Lebanon into a battleground for regional rivalries. This alignment has little to do with the interests of the Lebanese people but instead serves the objectives of the Iranian regime. As a result, Lebanon is not only a victim of its own political divisions but also a pawn in the larger regional chessboard, where Hezbollah’s strings are pulled by foreign powers.

The intertwining of Hezbollah’s military might with its political influence has created a dangerous dynamic within Lebanon. It wields significant power within the government, often hindering the functioning of state institutions and using its clout to shape policy in ways that are inconsistent with the best interests of the nation. This polarizing effect has stalled progress and deepened divisions within the already fragmented political landscape of Lebanon.

Furthermore, Hezbollah has cleverly employed social services, including schools, hospitals, and charities, as tools to consolidate its influence and recruitment. While these services may appear to benefit the local population, they serve to maintain its grip on power and deepen its influence, further complicating the challenges facing Lebanon.

It is evident that Hezbollah’s destructive role in Lebanon poses a grave threat to the nation’s peace, stability, and progress. The Lebanese people deserve better. They deserve a nation free from the shackles of regional conflicts and terrorist activities. They deserve a government that acts in their best interests, rather than one influenced by a paramilitary organization with foreign ties.

Addressing the Hezbollah problem is a complex task that necessitates international cooperation, commitment, and the recognition of Lebanon’s sovereignty. It is time for the world to recognize the destructive force Hezbollah represents, not just for Lebanon but for regional stability. A stable and prosperous Lebanon requires a concerted effort to mitigate Hezbollah’s influence and allow the country to chart its own course towards peace and prosperity.

*Elias Bejjani
Canadian-Lebanese Human Rights activist, journalist and political commentator

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