Indictment in Hariri Assassination Is Published

A U.N.-backed tribunal investigating the killing of a former Lebanese leader released its indictment against members of Hezbollah named in the killing.

Comments: 19

  1. Good. Now, when will the UN start investigating the assassinations of George Hawi and Samir Kassir?

  2. Wow. This is such a surprising finding. And, of course, swift repercussions to follow ?? The Devil never gets his "due" in today's world. Evil rules and the good "analyze."

  3. “Tension is nothing new to Lebanon, ritually seized by fears of conflict with Israel.”

    What about the 30-year Syrian occupation of Lebanon or the fact that Syrian and Iranian intelligence agents operate rather freely throughout the country? How about the 2008 attack by Hezbollah thugs against their fellow Lebanese citizens or the fact that Hezbollah has turned Lebanon into a virtual powder keg stockpiling over 60,000 rockets, missiles and god knows what other ordinance in that country? These go unmentioned by the New York Times. Instead, the Times characteristically zeros in on Israel, drawing her into matters that have absolutely nothing to do with her. Ah… the New York Times, it never disappoints.

  4. It is Iran which calls the shots for Hizbullah. It is Iran which has been destabilizing Lebanon in order to be able to place its missiles their in preparation for an eventual attack on Israel.

  5. So it took some 5 years to find the guilty one - good work UN - job well done. Perhaps the Pope can use your services when catching guilty priests.

  6. Hizbullah has captured Lebanon as Hamas has Gaza. Both are proxies of Iran. If Assad in Syria falls maybe these two terror groups will be cut off at the knees. More likely though will be new incursions via Egypt.

  7. Expecting quick action in naming members of the ruling party as assasins was never going to happen. Exacerbating the problem, to refresh commentators' memories, was that the same ruling faction quickly tried to completely destroy all evidence as quickly as possible.

    And no, Hezbollah won't allow its members to be arrested, but at least there is now information in the public record which won't be as easily washed away as Hariri's blood.

  8. The wheel grinds slow, but the good people of the region can take comfort.

    Those indicted cannot prove their innocence without a trail - and they will not permit a trial.

    Who doubts the veracity of the UN's efforts?

  9. Who can believe the neocon propaganda anymore.

    The US/Israeli tag team carried out this assassinastion like the many others with car-bombs leaving their signature monster hole in the ground.

    During a BBC interview in 2001, Harīrī was asked by Tim Sebastian why he refused to hand over members of Hezbollah that were accused by America of being terrorists. He responded that Hezbollah were the ones protecting Lebanon against the Israeli occupation and called for implementation of passed United Nations resolutions against Israel. He was further accused of making the American coalition in the War on Terrorism worthless and asked if he was ready for the consequences of his refusal, reminding him that George W. Bush had said: "Either you are with us, or you are with the terrorists". He replied that he had hoped that there would be no consequences, but would deal with them if they arrive. Hariri further said that he opposed the killing of all humans - Israeli, Palestinian, Syrian or Lebanese - and believed in dialogue as a solution. He further went on to say that Syria will have to stay in Lebanon for protection of Lebanon until they are no longer needed and Lebanon asks them to leave.

  10. Hassan Nasrallah dared the UN to release this report implicating Hezbollah in the bombing so it will be interesting to see what happens now. In truth, Nasrallah already won: during the years in which he cowed the UN into holding the report he became to most potent political figure in the country -- so potent he can give others, like Aoun, disproportionate representation in the government knowing he holds the power behind the scenes. And since there's little chance the UN will actually try to apprehend the Hezbollah members it accuses it is hard to see now why Nasrallah would act on his threats. War is a tactic and he has already achieved as much power as is possible within Lebanon's divided, sectarian system.

    I write more about this here:

  11. Lebanon: plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose (same old, same old). Sadly, I've given up seeing justice and peace prevail in that corner of the world for the next century or so. I'm pretty sure that the UN indictment is merely ink on paper that will not change the status quo, not especially due to the Lebanese populace at large, but largely due to an ineffectual UN and an impotent Lebanese government. Deal with Iran effectively (I don't know what that means, just that it still needs to happen) and you might make head-way in Lebanon (and possibly elsewhere in the MidEast).

  12. Lebanon was and could have been a model Middle Eastern state. But unfortunately, and mostly because of Hezbollah, it is in ruins now.

  13. Hezbollah has only one hostage left, but that's the UN. A pretty big one.

  14. Of course if Hezbollah would disavow its pathological hatred of Israel the Lebanese would have little to fear but that's about as likely as Christians being allowed into Mecca.

  15. Even though circumstancial, the evidence in the indictment that relies on location, placement, and contact via mobile phones can reasonably establish the conspiracy and organization and logistical supervision of the assassinations. What is proved by the evidence are the following: 1) surveillance; 2) purchase of the van which was used for detonation; and 3) working with abu adass on the post-assassination claim of responsibility. However, the indictment does not link the conspirators to the actual purchase or handling of the explosives, nor does it link them to however drove the van and detonated it (supposedly, not abu adass but dna evidence did not provide a positive identification).

    The relation of the 2 main leaders (badreddine and ayyash) to Hizbollah has not been established beyond family relations to Mughnieh and flimsy speculation about choosing Tripoli to deflect from south Beirut. The next set of indictemnts will need to address a direct link between either one of the two leaders and Lebanese, Syrian, Iranian, or HA officials to establish yet another set of cirumstantial evidence of the involvement of higher ups: but what is needed to convince all Lebanese is a smoking gun, to implicate anyone involved in security, intelligence, or politics (live witnesses, documents, or phone taps at least). Maybe this will be included in the next set of indictments.

    As this document stands, though, the only result would be to implicate the accused in conspiracy and attempt to commit murder(s), but the murder(s) themselves cannot be established without proof of connection to the actual explosives (and not just the van in which the explosives were set). I am assuming the question of explosives has been saved for the next set of indictments, implicating those who purchased or fabricated the materials and provided them to the operational team.

  16. "Hezbollah’s leader, Hassan Nasrallah, almost taunted officials who might think of trying to detain the four men."

    "'No Lebanese government will be able to carry out any arrests, whether in 30 days, 60 days, 1 year, 2 years, 30 years or even 300 years,' he said in July."

    Need anyone say more than Nasrallah, that pillar of civil rights, that hero of poor Assad's battle against those bad protesters, that excellent polisher of Iran's sandals? Such a freedom fighter!

  17. Speaking of propaganda, check out #15's "He further went on to say that Syria will have to stay in Lebanon for protection of Lebanon until they are no longer needed and Lebanon asks them to leave."

    All those years under Assad Sr., all the Lebanese had to do was say,
    "Oh please, Mr. Assad, can you move those tanks out of the Bekka Valley and stop using our opium to fund your regime? Things are going so well in our country, thanks to you! Thanks for knocking off our Prime Minister Aoun!"

    Syria will leave about as fast as the Soviets left Poland or E. Germany, that is to say, when they are too weak to keep their grip on Greater Syria.

  18. Naim Salem, a professor of international affairs and diplomacy at Notre Dame University in Beirut, told Al Jazeera that people would be disappointed that the indictment did not bring much new evidence to the fore.

    "We were expecting the indictment to bring some new data that had not been heard or seen before but 90 per cent of what's been said today was published before," he said.

    "It is a shortcoming that will not convince many Lebanese and Arabs [of the tribunal's legitimacy]. The problem is that it's mostly circumstantial [evidence] and we know that Israel and others have the capability to duplicate mobile phone cards."

  19. “The full story will, however, only unfold in the courtroom, where an open, public, fair and transparent trial will render a final verdict,”
    The problem, when you speak about a fair and transparent trial, is trust. How can you trust a tribunal which president is a known friend of Lebanon's aggressor and enemy, Israel?
    How can you trust a tribunal that was created with the only agreement of an illegal Lebanese government and with an illegal and unconstitutional accord with Lebanon?
    To be constitutional it should have been discussed and signed by the President of the Republic (article 52 of the Lebanese constitution) and the Lebanese share of the expenses should have been agreed on by a vote in the parliament. These two conditions were never satisfied.
    Moreover, the United Nations inquirers put in jail, without due process, a lot of innocent people, among them four high ranking generals, for 4 years, to confess afterwards they were mistaken and sorry. They did it according to false witnesses' accusations. These false witnesses are until now protected by the Tribunal against any legal indictment of their crime. It will be too long to cite all of this tribunal's illegalities, like the non-existence of any secret of the inquiry or passing the inquiry’s 81 computers inside the frontiers of Lebanon’s enemy and aggressor, Israel… I think that the New York Times should show its fairness by asking its reporter in Lebanon to give him the truth, all the truth about it and not repeat all these lies about a tribunal that already proved itself as an instrument in the hands of those who do not want Lebanon's good.
    The truth is that we, the Lebanese majority, do not trust this Tribunal anymore.
    Let's not forget that the Hariris, son and father, were forced on us by the Saudis and their Western protectors in the days when the Syrians were still their allies and agreed on that.