March 14/2007

Bible Reading of the day
Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint Matthew 18,21-35. Then Peter approaching asked him, "Lord, if my brother sins against me, how often must I forgive him? As many as seven times?"Jesus answered, "I say to you, not seven times but seventy-seven times. That is why the kingdom of heaven may be likened to a king who decided to settle accounts with his servants. When he began the accounting, a debtor was brought before him who owed him a huge amount. Since he had no way of paying it back, his master ordered him to be sold, along with his wife, his children, and all his property, in payment of the debt. At that, the servant fell down, did him homage, and said, 'Be patient with me, and I will pay you back in full.' Moved with compassion the master of that servant let him go and forgave him the loan. When that servant had left, he found one of his fellow servants who owed him a much smaller amount. He seized him and started to choke him, demanding, 'Pay back what you owe.' Falling to his knees, his fellow servant begged him, 'Be patient with me, and I will pay you back.' But he refused. Instead, he had him put in prison until he paid back the debt. Now when his fellow servants saw what had happened, they were deeply disturbed, and went to their master and reported the whole affair. His master summoned him and said to him, 'You wicked servant! I forgave you your entire debt because you begged me to. Should you not have had pity on your fellow servant, as I had pity on you?' Then in anger his master handed him over to the torturers until he should pay back the whole debt. So will my heavenly Father do to you, unless each of you forgives his brother from his heart."

Free Opinions
Using Enemies to Face Antagonists. By: Abdullah Iskandar March 14/07
Next step: Separate ideology from the technicalities of nuclear proliferation-Daily Star March 14/07
The World Council of the Cedars Revolution-ReDeployment of UNIFIL on the Lebanese/Syrian Border/March 14/07
National American Coptic Assembly: Copts reject the new amendments in the Egyptian Constitution/ March 14.07

Latest News Reports From miscellaneous sources For March 14/07
Lebanese Police Bust Syria-Based Terrorist Network-AINA,
Naharnet Exclusive: Police Bust Syria-Based Terrorist Network-Naharnet
Three New Yorkers Linked To Hezbollah-New York Sun
Answers about Hezbollah-Rochester Democrat and Chronicle
Hezbollah all praise for Indian Army-Times of India, India
Lebanese Media Discusses Hizbullah's Status in Lebanon-Middle East Media Research Institute
Israel Open To Saudi Peace Initiative-Naharnet
Sharaa Tackles International Tribunal in Cairo-Naharnet
Prodio Urges Assad to Cooperate with Solana-Naharnet
Saudi to Host Lebanon Reconciliation Talks
Roed-Larsen Gears Up for Report on 1559
Any Suggested Names for Lebanon War,? Israel Asking
Syria urges broader US dialogue-BBC News
Solana in Riyadh for talks on Lebanon, ME peace-Jerusalem Post, Israel
Solana seeks fast end to Lebanon power struggle-Gulf Times
Berri, Hariri In-Depth Talks Spark Hopes of Breakthrough in ...Naharnet
Kiwi Released On Bail In

Syria plays down expectations from talks with US-Reuters 
Ban Ki-moon submits Lebanon 1701 report to Security Council Friday-Kuwait News Agency

Dubai Airport Temporarily Closed after Malfunction on Bangladeshi Airliner-Naharnet

Latest News Reports From miscellaneous sources For March 13/07
Judicial Council ends row between Lahoud and Rizk
Berri and Hariri grow more optimistic after third meeting
Solana to confront Damascus on 'positions that have to change'
Four Maronite universities hold youth conference
Greece objects to Turkey at helm of UN navy force
Aoun says 'radical' move needed to break deadlock
Sfeir stresses Church's need for funds
Abboud meets Aoun, laments war damage
Expect lower temperatures, return of stormy weather
Qabalan: Chapter 7 Hariri court risks causing strife
Qabbani says Franco-Lebanese summit on education 'assists me in my mission'
ISF narrowly foils bomb plot - security sources
Joint project aims to empower women
Journalist testifies to 'racism' at Guardians of the Cedars meeting
NSSF decree announces list of hospitals approved by fund's board for 2007
UN agency helps South address water worries
Residents of Kesrouan town lament dust and noise pollution from concrete factories

Naharnet Exclusive: Police Bust Syria-Based Terrorist Network
Lebanese police have busted a Syria-based terrorist network grouping operatives from three Arab nationalities on charges of carrying out the twin-bus bombings north of Beirut last month and planning further attacks, reliable sources told Naharnet Tuesday.
The sources, speaking on condition of anonymity, said six of the eight culprits have been arrested in Beirut and its surroundings, less than a month after carrying out the twin-bus bombings in the mountainous town of Ain Alaq northeast of Beirut, which resulted in killing three people and wounding more than 20. The other two remain at large and are believed to be hiding at north Lebanon's Nahr el-Bared Palestinian refugee camp, according to the sources.
The culprits hold Syrian and Saudi identification documents. Two of the held operatives are Palestinian refugees from the camp of Yarmouk near the Syrian capital of Damascus. The bust, according to one source, also included confiscating a "large quantity of explosives" that were hidden in the Beirut apartment of Syrian suspect identified as Mustapha Siyo.
Members of the network, according to the source, infiltrated into Lebanon from Syria last November under the cover of the so-called "Fatah-Islam" group, which was set up by Syrian intelligence with the objective of carrying out terrorist attacks to destabilize Lebanon and block the ratification of the international tribunal which would try suspects in the 2005 assassination of ex-Premier Rafik Hariri and related crimes.
Siyo's cell had been operating under cover from an apartment in Beirut's Christian neighborhood of Karm el-Zaytoun, which is part of the capital's Ashrafiyeh district, the source said. The daily newspaper al-Moustaqbal reported on Nov. 30 that Syrian President Bashar Assad has sent 200 terrorists to Palestinian refugee camps in Lebanon to assassinate 36 Lebanese public figures. The group, according to the report, operated under the Fatah-Islam name. The security source said Fatah-Islam is just a "cover" for the terrorist network that operates in Lebanon from bases controlled by the so-called Fatah-Intifada group, a Syrian-controlled faction that broke away from Yasser Arafat's mainstream Fatah early in 1983 as part of an effort by the late Syrian President Hafez Assad to create a substitute for Arafat's Palestine Liberation Organization. Fatah-Intifada, led from Damascus by the so-called Abu Moussa, runs fortified bases in east Lebanon's Bekaa Valley established when the area was controlled by Syria's army which ended its deployment in Lebanon in April 2005. Beirut, 13 Mar 07, 15:28

Saudi to Host Lebanon Reconciliation Talks
Saudi Arabia is working on hosting a reconciliation meeting between Lebanon's pro and anti-government factions next week, Arab diplomatic sources said on Tuesday. The meeting would be along the lines of talks which produced a deal on a Palestinian unity government between the Fatah faction and the Islamist movement Hamas in Mecca last month, an Arab diplomat told Agence France Presse. The proposed meeting would be held in Riyadh to "seal an agreement between the opposition and the parliamentary majority," he said. Saudi Arabia has spearheaded efforts to resolve the political crisis that has gripped Lebanon since the Hizbullah-led opposition launched on December 1 an open-ended sit-in in downtown Beirut to topple the government of Premier Fouad Saniora. The Arab diplomat said Riyadh's ambassador to Beirut, Abdul Aziz Khoja, is working on an agreement between the two sides.
The expected meeting would come ahead of an Arab summit due to be held in the Saudi capital on March 28-29, the diplomat said. The two issues at the crux of the Lebanon crisis are the opposition's demand for veto power in the government and the majority's insistence on ratification of an international tribunal agreement to try suspects in the February 2005 assassination of ex-Premier Rafik Hariri and related crimes.(AFP-Naharnet) Beirut, 13 Mar 07, 14:20

Berri, Hariri In-Depth Talks Spark Hopes of Crisis Breakthrough
Future Movement leader Saad Hariri met opposition Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri overnight for their third round of talks in as many days, sparking hopes on Tuesday that in-depth discussions could lead to a breakthrough in the nearly four-month-old political crisis.
"Give good news to those who spread rumors tell them that God willing the atmosphere is good," Hariri told reporters upon arrival at Berri's mansion in Ain el-Tineh Monday evening. Berri nodded his approval. No announcements were made following the two-and-a-half-hour meeting between Berri, a close Hizbullah ally that has been demanding veto power in a new government, and Hariri, in his capacity as representative of the pro-government March 14 coalition. The daily An Nahar headlined in bold Tuesday: "Ain el-Tineh-3: The beginning of in-depth discussions reinforce optimism."
It said a surprise visit by Hariri to Lebanese Forces leader Samir Geagea at the end of his third meeting with the speaker indicated that the Hariri-Berri talks were moving forward. An Nahar said Hariri, accompanied by former legislator Ghattas Khoury, met privately with Geagea at the latter's house in Bzimmar for 90 minutes.
Hariri said after the meeting that he briefed Geagea on the outcome of his talks with Berri, adding that he was hopeful that a settlement to the political impasse would be reached "if there was a brave decision." Responding to a question, Hariri said that he cannot say "we have reached a final solution (yet)." "A solution requires extra days, but we are optimistic," vis--vis the given and taken proposals, Hariri added. He said that he and Berri have "reached the details and there is nothing that comes between us, the March 14 Forces," adding that the pro-government coalition is in agreement on the main issues. Geagea agreed, saying that March 14 had been advocating a political settlement to the ongoing crisis since the beginning of the stalemate.
"We have serious intentions to reach a settlement," Geagea added. Meanwhile, the daily As Safir newspaper said Tuesday the Berri-Hariri talks have produced a "magical prescription" to the political crisis.
Citing well-informed Lebanese sources, the paper said the two rival leaders are expected to hold two additional meetings one on Tuesday and another either on Wednesday or Thursday. The sources said the two sides have reached an "acceptable, synchronized and well-balanced formula" on the issues of the international tribunal and the formation of a new government. As Safir quoted Berri as telling visitors that the new formula proposed to Hariri "makes every (cabinet) minister a neutral minister," hence guaranteeing that Prime Minister Fouad Saniora's government is not going to be toppled and that the creation of an international tribunal will not be hampered. Beirut, 13 Mar 07, 07:32
Any Suggested Names for Lebanon War,? Israel Asking
Israeli Defense Minister Amir Peretz, who faces nationwide calls to resign over last summer's war between the Jewish State and Hizbullah, has ordered aides to find a name for the conflict. The minister has commissioned two reserve generals and a law professor to drum up a name, his office said in a statement obtained by Agence France Presse on Tuesday. The Israeli army initially called its 34-day offensive on Lebanon "Operation Just Reward" before renaming it "Operation Change of Direction."
Cabinet minister Yaacov Ederi, who chairs a committee responsible for official ceremonies, told army radio that he was also on the hunt for a name and would convene his committee Monday to discuss the issue. "I've been working on this for 10 days at the request of the bereaved families," he said.
"Defense officials can bring their suggestions to the committee on Monday," he said, denying there was any competition between rival departments and preferring talk of a "military operation" rather than war. The Israel-Hizbullah war began on July 12 when the Shiite group kidnapped two Israeli soldiers in a deadly-cross border raid. The media coined the conflict the Second Lebanon War following Israel's 1982 invasion of Lebanon, dubbed Operation Peace in Galilee. Israel has commissioned multiple investigations into the widely perceived failures of the war, most notably a government commission, in a bid to appease public criticism and protests from thousands of army reservists.
Israeli Channel 10 television said Monday that the commission will publish part of an interim report on political responsibility this week.
About 70 politicians and military officials have testified before the panel since it was set up last September 17.Although members of the public urged Peretz and Prime Minister Ehud Olmert to step down over the war, Israel's military chief of staff Dan Halutz has been the only top level leader so far to resign as a result of the conflict.(AFP-Naharnet) (AFP photo shows Peretz) Beirut, 13 Mar 07, 12:01

Roed-Larsen Gears Up for Report on 1559
U.N. Special Envoy Terje Roed-Larsen has discussed with Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak the implementation of Resolution 1559 as well the situation in Lebanon and the region, An Nahar daily reported Tuesday. "We discussed issues particularly preparations for the next report by U.N. chief Ban Ki-Moon to the Security Council about the implementation of Resolution 1559," Roed-Larsen told reporters after his talks with Mubarak in Cairo on Monday. Roed-Larsen is in charge of overseeing U.N. Security Council Resolution 1559 that was passed in 2004. It calls for free and fair elections in Lebanon and for the disarmament of all militias, including Hizbullah. An Nahar said Roed-Larsen will travel to New York next to inform Ban on the outcome of his talks. Beirut, 13 Mar 07, 10:34

The World Council of the Cedars Revolution
Monday 12th March 2007
H.E. Ban Ki-Moon
Secretary General
United Nations Assembly
New York NY
Your Excellency,
Re - Deployment of UNIFIL on the Lebanese/Syrian Border
It is becoming increasingly evident that the Spirit of the endeavors of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) towards a lasting peace for Lebanon is gradually waning and being marginalized by a clever and calculating Hezbollah / Syrian / Iranian axis.
Has the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) lost the will to fully implement its own resolutions 1559 and 1701?
Have the coalition members of UNIFIL lost the desire to effectively implement those resolutions instead of simply becoming observers, being brushed aside by Hezbollah/Syrian/Iranian military which are carrying out their operations of illegal arms supply from Syria to terrorist organizations on Lebanese soil? Is Hezbollah re-arming itself for another onslaught against Israel and/or perhaps against the Civil Society of Lebanon? Who can trust them one way or the other? The questions are being asked, can the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) deliver on effective implementation of its Resolutions?
It was the United Nations Security Council's ineffectiveness and inability to take decisive action which ultimately led to the United States attack on the forces of evil in Iraq.
Or, are we once again seeing the theatrics of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) being played out in a major performance of showmanship, when in fact there is very little substance in delivery?
Will this hesitation and indecision lead once more to the destruction of Lebanon and the dismemberment of the fabric of Lebanese civil society which has been severely tested over the last thirty years by the covetous enemies of Lebanon's sovereignty?
The Lebanese government has clearly indicated the following;
- That it wants the Lebanese / Syrian border protected against the supply of illegal weapons
to terrorists on Lebanese soil.
- That the Lebanese government is either unwilling because of fear of further assassinations
or unable through lack of capability to protect its own borders.
- That the Lebanese government wants and needs the Unite Nations Security Council (UNSC)
to mandate chapter 7 as an integral feature of resolution 1701 and deploy UNIFIL to protect
its borders with Syria.
Nevertheless, it does not have the courage to formally make this request because of the fear
of more assassinations and military reprisals by a ruthless Syrian regime.
Clearly Lebanon needs the support and the protection of the United Nations Security Council in order to be able to fulfill its obligations under resolution 1701. In the absence of a formal request from the government because of the above stated reasons, it becomes incumbent upon the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) to take the necessary decision and mandate chapter 7 forthwith. Hesitation can only pave the way for another civil war.
Owing to a complicated political structure which can and has brought people from different political persuasions together in a ministry, it has created a situation in which not all ministers are loyal to Lebanon or to the Cedars Revolution. Such a person is the minister for defense Mr. Elias Murr who survived an assassination attempt on his life. However, we must not forget that he is planted and supported in his ministry by the Syrians. He no more represents the wishes of the Lebanese government than Hassan Nasrallah. He has recently traveled to the United States; and in meetings with United States authorities and the United Nations Security Council members, he has informed that the Lebanese borders with Syria are controlled and protected.
The World Council for the Cedars Revolution (WCCR) hereby extends an invitation to an UNSC delegation to jointly inspect the borders with Syria and let us show you thirty six (36) different locations where Syria enters Lebanon with arms supply on a daily basis. Then you can determine first hand the intentions and motivations of an irresponsible person who purports to be the defense minister for Lebanon.
That should not be surprising to anyone, for he is the son-in-law of an unconstitutional president, whose presidency has survived purely by the tyrannical support of the Syrians.
Defense minister Elias Murr knows only too well that the Lebanese army has been infiltrated by Syrian and Iranian officers who are paving the way for daily deliveries illegal arms from Syria to Terrorist organizations in Lebanon including Hezbollah. He knows only too well that the only chance for success in protecting the borders is by deploying UNIFIL to do the job.
Minister Murr has been reluctant to protect the Lebanese border with Syria. That is a blatant act of disloyalty to Lebanon's sovereignty. He along with others backing his agenda have obstructed every effort to establish a United Nations court to try the suspects in the assassinations of former Prime Minister Rafic Hariri and others. They have created a constitutional crisis in order to alleviate the pressure off Hezbollah for the surrender of its arsenal to the Lebanese army.
The World Council for the Cedars Revolution (WCCR), in representing the wishes of many millions of Lebanese throughout the world hereby calls on the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) to take immediate, crucial and effective measures of mandating the UNIFIL with chapter 7; and controlling this ungodly dilemma before Lebanon falls victim to another civil war.
The United Nations Security Council (UNSC) bears the responsibility of protecting the people and sovereignty of a nation that is a founding member of the United Nations and which is deeply in need of effective help now.
It would be a tragedy of enormous proportions to allow Lebanon to become a second Iraq.
Joseph P Baini
President, WCCR

Using Enemies to Face Antagonists
Abdullah Iskandar Al-Hayat - 13/03/07//
Hezbollah and its allies in Lebanon have based their opposition to the Fouad Siniora government on the idea that they are standing up to a US-Israeli offensive. During the dispute that broke out through the famous sit-in protest in downtown Beirut, members of the government were accused of supporting Israel's war on Lebanon last July, and the government itself and its president were accused of being a 'Feltman government' (in reference to the US ambassador to Beirut). These words were declared by Hezbollah's Secretary General and were later repeated by all his allied leaders.
Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah justified the escalation against the government by the fact that some Hezbollah members had resigned from the government, by carrying out a sit-in protest in front of it, and by demanding the broken third in the cabinet and new parliamentary elections. The excuse was that the government was serving Israel and the US' plans and that Nasrallah was striving to thwart them in all his positions. Regardless of whether or not the government actually took this stance and of the style adopted to express this opposition, everything coming from the US and Israel concerning Lebanon is supposed to be in contradiction to this stance. Indeed, the party and its allies do not miss an opportunity to refute US and Israeli positions and to respond to them, since these positions are against the Lebanese opposition and aim to defeat it.
However, Hezbollah, along with the opposition, does not hesitate to turn this enmity toward the US and Israel, the mobilization, and the gatherings against them into a pretext in its favor against the government. In the report issued by the US State Department, President Emile Lahoud, Hezbollah's staunch ally, only found paragraphs about the continuing detention of the four officials in the framework of the investigation into the murder of Rafik Hariri. The issue here is not about defending or condemning these detainees. Indeed, it has to do with how an annual and routine statistical report, even if it comes from Washington, is taken advantage of to adopt a political stance on the international tribunal. The issue was not only with regard to this political stance, but also about the development of a new crisis in the country over judges' independence and attempts to pressure them. He is being accused of being submitting to the government, fulfilling its political objectives, and harming the Ministry of Defense because he did not share the opposition's stances on the tribunal.
Since the beginning of the July War, Hezbollah has always repeated that it was responding to the aggression and that if it had expected the kind of Israeli attack that actually happened, it would not have kidnapped the Israeli soldiers. While it was being said that the party invented the war for regional goals, and while Hezbollah was affirming that it had only responded to the aggression, the last Lebanese crisis broke out and its title became 'The International Tribunal and The Unity Government'. This happened as soon as the military operations were stopped and international Resolution 1701 was beginning to be implemented. In other words, the dispute was transformed from the aggression to internal affairs. Hezbollah did not find a new excuse to continue its attack on the government except for what leaked out from the Winograd Commission, as said by Olmert, regarding Israel's responsibility in the failure of the war. Olmert said that his government had set a plan to respond to Hezbollah if it dared kidnap soldiers, especially after the abduction of Shalit in the Gaza Strip. The party considered that Olmert's words about this plan confirmed its accusations of Lebanese officials and members of the government of connivance with and instigation to the aggression. In both cases, Hezbollah and its allies have intentionally used the words of their foreign enemies, Israel and the US, in the fight against their local rivals, the March 14 Forces, over internal issues, while efforts and mediations are being made to get out of this internal crisis. The party only found the US and Israel's words reliable when it could make use of them, even out of context, against the government and its parties. This does not mean that Hezbollah is about to change its foreign coalitions. It means that all courses are good to defeat the government and the parliamentary majority, even if one of these ways is the US and Israel's testimonies