LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Hezbollah’s Shebaa Farms pretext

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“A closer look at Hezbollah” (Commentary, Sept. 12), the otherwise informative review by Joshua Sinai of “Hezbollah: The Global Footprint of Lebanon’s Party of God,” written by Matthew Levitt, confuses one important matter.

Mr. Sinai notes that after Israel’s withdrawal from southern Lebanon in 2000, “Hezbollah has been left with demanding that Israel withdraw from the relatively inconsequential Shebaa Farms, which constitute a tiny uninhabited territory along the common border claimed by Lebanon but occupied by Israel.”

The reviewer correctly observes that Hezbollah has been justifying its “resistance” to Israel stance on Israel’s alleged occupation of Lebanese territory, i.e., Shebaa Farms. But the review fails to point out that Shebaa Farms was occupied by Israel when it took the Golan Heights from Syria, not Lebanon, in the 1967 Six-Day War.

The United Nations has confirmed that Israel withdrew completely from Lebanon in 2000. The Lebanese government, dominated by Hezbollah and its allies, claims Shebaa Farms for itself. Syria, a patron of Hezbollah, has not openly rejected this revisionism. But neither has Damascus transferred its claim to sovereignty to Beirut.

Absent its Shebaa Farms pretext, Hezbollah’s continued violation of U.N. Security Council resolutions calling for its disarmament would be more difficult to whitewash.


Washington Director

CAMERA—Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America


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