Global Policy Forum

Hidden Agenda Behind US Interest in Hariri Murder


By Hassan Tahsin

Arab View
November 25, 2005

One wonders why the United States shows special interest in matters related to the murder of Rafik Al-Hariri, particularly when Lebanon did not demand any US interference or the involvement of the Security Council. The US behavior gives the impression that it has appointed itself as the international policeman.

The assassination of Hariri is, no doubt, a dastardly act and a heinous crime deserving maximum punishment whoever may be its perpetrators. This fact does not grant another country, however powerful it may be, any special right to interfere in the internal affairs of Lebanon. Such intervention is against international law. The constitution and activities of the Mehlis commission have no sanction of international law or the UN Charter. Hence all activities of the commission amount to a brazen violation of the rights of both Syria and Lebanon.

The assassination of Hariri and the strange stance taken by some powerful nations has a touch of masterly cunningness. It also reveals some undeclared interests behind the tragic developments. The world has watched identical scenarios in recent history. The siege imposed on Syria and the charges against the country are reminiscent of the sanctions against Iraq before its unjustifiable occupation by the US and British forces. In the case of Syria there is, nevertheless, a difference. This time the US and its allies don't want to repeat the mistake of going for a war without Security Council's endorsement as was done in the case of Iraq.

Therefore the US with the support of France is keen to exact a UN condemnation of Syria before going ahead with any punitive action against Damascus. It is quite naí¯ve to suppose that Washington adopts an anti-Syrian policy just to fight the terrorist menace or as a natural reaction to the Sept. 11 attacks. It is common knowledge that the Western interventions in Arab countries have nothing to do with the war on terror; it has much more deeper designs than meet the eye. After the fall of the Soviet Union, the vast oil deposits lying buried in the depths of the Caspian Sea and surrounding countries have been an irresistible temptation for the Western powers, particularly the United States.

The US meddling in the Central Asia with efforts to bring the countries of the region to the US fold did not produce the desired results. The US feels that in addition to the Middle Eastern countries Pakistan, Iran, Turkey and Afghanistan should remain under its sphere of influence. A cursory look at the map of the region shows that all these countries are strategically placed on the road to the valuable resources in the Caspian region. This is the obvious reason why Washington grabbed the opportunity offered by the Sept. 11 attacks to raise the bogey of international terror and start an all-out war. The real goal is to gain the control of the region in a phased manner.

All knows the rest of the story. Iraq was falsely charged with stockpiling weapons of mass destruction at secret places threatening the security of the United States, which claimed that it, therefore, had the right to attack and replace the ruling Iraqi government. However it did not take long for the world to learn that all the charges were framed with the aim of carrying out some ulterior Anglo-American schemes.

Now that the Iraq war has ended the way the US and Britain wanted the next target is Syria. France joins the US in calling Syria a terrorist nation and demanding a regime-change. The real reason why Syria is at the top of the American hit list is that Damascus refused to dance to the Western tune as several other countries are doing.

Why Syria before Iran? The answer is very simple. An attack and occupation of Iran is not as simple as it looks. The US is still sinking in Iraqi quagmire. A probable nuclear threat from Iran has also to consider. On the other hand, the military victory of the US in Iraq and the presence of its forces in the region make the occupation of Syria easy. The march on Iran after crushing Syria is likely to make the battle for Iran less hazardous.

In brief the Western attacks in the Middle East is neither for the sake of fighting terror nor for imposing democracy. It is in fact to enrich the American economy and ensure cheap and uninterrupted fuel supply, particularly after China has notched up to the second position among the world powers. A weakened Iraq and Syria would also guarantee the security of Israel. Therefore it is the duty of all peace-loving people of the world to back Syria against a US-French war of aggression.

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