Transcript of Dr. Joseph Gebeily's Remarks at the Lebanese American Leadership Conference on Capitol Hill - July 28, 2006

 

Congressman Issa,

My friends, leaders of the Lebanese-American Organizations

Distinguished guests

Ladies and Gentlemen: 

It is regretful that we have to meet while Lebanon is being destroyed and its population killed and displaced.  Lebanon today is going through a crisis with regional and world wide repercussions.   

As we mentioned in our invitation we are here to discuss the roots of the problem and to try to find solutions which will hopefully get Lebanon out of the current crisis and provide permanent stability and peace for its war tired population.

As we all know, Hezbollah, a radical sectarian party, a legacy of the Syrian occupation and a proxy of the Iranian regime continues to pose a threat to Lebanon’s sovereignty. The Hezbollah militia has refused to disarm, and has been preventing the Lebanese armed forces from deploying over all of the Lebanese territory under the pretexts of "deterrence" and "resistance" and the threats of starting a sectarian strife .  While having a minister in the Lebanese cabinet and 10 members in parliament, and while participating in the national dialogue, Hezbollah decided, on July 12th 2006, to unilaterally deflagrate the situation with Israel, dragging Lebanon into a major regional conflict.

This unnecessary war has entered Lebanon into an uneven military confrontation with Israel. This war was never agreed upon or decided by the representatives of the Lebanese people.  According to Mr.Nassrallah, Hezbollah's leader, it is a fight to regain the "dignity of the Umma" the (Nation in its broader sense)." It is the blessed Islamic resistance fight to destroy the Zionist enemy". 

We ask  Mr. Nassrallah :

  • Where is the dignity when 4 million Lebanese are left defenseless under the relentless deadly fire power of the Israeli armed forces?

  • Where is the dignity when half a million people are displaced begging for food and shelter?

  • Where is the dignity in dying uselessly under tons of rubble?

  • When did the Lebanese agree to become martyrs for the Islamic resistance?

  • Didn't your "deterrence" strategy fall apart when it did not deter Israel from destroying whatever it liked?

We are here to try to stop this madness. To do so we have to be frank and direct in addressing all the issues away from rhetoric and generic slogans. Verbal condemnations and inflamed speeches have produced no result so far.  The main question we should all ask today is: Do we want to return Lebanon to where it was before the July 12th disaster?   Our answer is a sure and non negotiable NO .

As a consequence of  the presence of the illegal militias sponsored by regional rogue states,  a great injustice is being committed today against the Lebanese people.  Lebanon was turned to a battleground for promoting the agenda of Iran with the complicity of Syria, and for the confrontation between those supporting peace and stability in the region and those benefiting from extremism and disorder.  Any permanent and effective solution should include the disarming of all non government forces in Lebanon.  Hezbollah should be asked to put the Lebanese interests first and to concede that its declared strategy of single handedly defending Lebanon has failed.

My friends,

Lebanon is dying, we call on all the Lebanese leadership to understand the gravity of the situation and abandon any regional and sectarian allegiances for the sake of their homeland, we call on all friends especially in the US to exert all possible efforts in order to assist Lebanon and to pressure all regional parties to this conflict to take their fight elsewhere.

Thank you

 

And now, I would like to introduce our friend, a friend to Lebanon, and to the Lebanese-American community, Congressman Darrel Issa.

I have known Congressman Issa for several years now. I have known him and respected him as a dedicated, committed man proud of his Lebanese heritage.

He is a regular traveler to the Middle East and to Lebanon. Although I heard he is not much welcome in Syria anymore. He was in the region just a few days ago, amidst this terrifying war. And while he has been trying to engage, to build bridges, to mend fences, he never wavers or negotiates when it comes to the sovereignty and freedom of Lebanon.

I watched him on C-Span a couple of days ago, and I have to say, I rarely see such clarity, such truthfulness in addressing complex and sensitive issues, like the ones facing Lebanon and the Middle East, coming from the mouth of a politician, let alone a politician with Lebanese blood…Thank you Darrell.

 

 

Contact

Dr. Joseph Gebeily

President,

Lebanese Information Center

American Lebanese Coalition

Tel:  (240) 498-1895

Email:  jgebeily@licus.org

 

 

© 2006 Lebanese Information Center – www.licus.org

 


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