Friday, August 25, 2006

Amir Taheri: Hezbollah Did Not Win

Amir Taheri (photo at left) is an Iranian-born journalist who specializes in Middle Eastern Affairs. A brief biography and lengthy list of Mr. Taheri's recent articles may be found here.

In today's Wall Street Journal
, Taheri cites the evidence that Hezbollah may have lost more than in gained, on the Lebanese political scene, even within Lebanon's Shiite community, and in the Arab world at large.

Please read Mr. Taheri's entire article. Two cautionary notes occurred to me:

1. Mr. Taheri notes that even within Hezbollah, some dissident voices criticize the leadership style of Hassan Nasrallah as "Stalinist," and feel that he is too beholden and subservient to Iran's supreme leader, Ali Khamenei. If he is indeed Stalinist, and feels his political grip in Lebanon slipping, Nasrallah, with Iranian and Syrian backing, may well attempt a coup, to install a Hezbollah-led Shiite dictatorship. Such a move in all likelihood would rekindle the Lebanese civil war. Short of that, he may move to violently suppress his Lebanese critics.

2. If Mr. Taheri is right, and the Lebanese government forces Hezbollah to disarm, I lose my lunch bet to my friend Yossi, as explained in the Hedgehog Blog here. That is a bet that I would love to lose.


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