What some Lebanese and Arabs do not realize, or do not wish to, is that the latest Saudi -- and subsequently, Gulf states’ -- stance vis-à-vis the state of Lebanon was the final straw after years of patience for which the Saudis were frequently reproached.
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If we were to conduct a quick review of the damages inflicted by the so-called Hezbollah, Iran’s proxy militia in Lebanon, on not only Saudis, but also the people of the Gulf and Yemen, the list would go on and on.
In Kuwait, one of the greatest security breaches to be detected was the “Abdali cell” in August 2015, a heavily armed cell with extensive plans that aim at undermining the state of Kuwait. The cell, named after the Abdali Farms where it was detected, was of Hezbollah’s making, as usual.
Previously, in the eighties, Hezbollah operative Imad Mughniyeh -- who surely needs no introduction -- had masterminded the bombing of two popular cafes and the motorcade of the late Prince of Kuwait Sheikh Jabir al-Ahmad al-Sabah.
In Bahrain, the Iranian evil operating through the Saraya al-Ashtar cell and the terrorism training they receive from Hezbollah has not ceased.
In Yemen, the Houthis would have never been where they are if not for Hezbollah’s arms, training, and sheltering.
As for Saudi Arabia, the punishment of the official Lebanese state becomes warranted with a simple reminder that Hezbollah controls the government and resources of the country; the same Hezbollah that trains Houthis on the launching of missiles and drones toward Saudi cities and plants spies here and there. Not to mention the crimes committed in the Kingdom’s Eastern Province by its Saudi branch, Hezbollah in the Hijaz, such as the Khobar Towers bombings in 1996 and the Awamiyah incidents.
In addition to all the above, there is one more calamity for which Hezbollah is responsible, which is the evil smuggling of narcotics in agricultural products. This not only inflicts damage on the people of the Kingdom and the Gulf, but also on the average Lebanese farmer who must suffer the economic consequences.
Saudi writer Abdulrahman al-Rashed spoke the truth in his latest article for this paper when he tackled the core of the issue: “Perils are mounting for Lebanon because Iran has turned it into a battlefront state. Hezbollah militias fight in the region as an Iranian proxy and conduct military and intelligence operations. Iran has turned Lebanon into a center for running its regional and international battles, as it has assigned Hezbollah a series of tasks to serve its forces in Iraq, and to manage the media campaign of the Houthi militia from inside Beirut’s southern suburb, through TV channels such as Al Masirah.”
To conclude, I quote Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan al-Saud, who described the situation accurately: “There is a crisis in Lebanon, not a crisis between us and Lebanon.”
This article was originally published in, and translated from, pan-Arab daily Asharq al-Awsat.
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