Hezbollah Presence in Lebanon Nothing Less Than ‘Iranian Occupation,’ Christian Journalist Asserts
A prominent Lebanese journalist who survived a 2014 terrorist attack in the Bekaa Valley – the heartland of Iran’s Shia proxy, Hezbollah – has described the Islamist terror group’s role in Lebanon as “just like any occupying force.”
Naufal Daou, the Editor-in-Chief of Naharnet and a leading member of the March 14 Alliance – a coalition of Lebanese political parties opposed to the Syrian regime’s hold on Lebanon – told LDC TV that the “Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) are here. They are called Hezbollah.”
Daou’s comments in the June 28 interview, translated by the Middle East Media Research Institute, were challenged by presenter Dima Sadek, who insisted that “there was no army in Lebanon other than the Lebanese army.” But in the fortnight since the interview was recorded, Hezbollah has stepped up its threats against Israel, warning on Thursday this week that the Jewish state should expect a “surprise attack.”
“Israel is closer than ever before to its demise,” Hashem Safieddine, a Hezbollah spokesman, declared in remarks on the eleventh anniversary of the Lebanon War of 2006.
“The Christians must say, plain and simple, that our source of authority is the state, which protects us, and not the Assad regime, Iran, or any foreign regional axis,” Daou said in the interview.
“This is an occupation. If you don’t let me call it an occupation, I’ll take offense,” he told Sadek. “This is where the resistance to Hezbollah begins.”
Daou scoffed at Sadek’s assertion that Hezbollah was composed of Lebanese fighters and officers, not Iranians. “So what if they are Lebanese? Whose orders do they obey?” he asked.
Watch footage of the exchange below: