Ben Zogby writes about an Irish-style roadmap for solving the problem of Hezbollah in Lebanon.
Though there are expansive differences in the ideology and objectives of the Provisional Irish Republican Army (PIRA) and Hezbollah, the two armed-militant organizations share a common history by way of tactics: both groups launched mortar and rocket attacks, engaged in kidnappings of soldiers and operated over the years within the bounds of a country not directly linked to the campaigns of aggression. Lebanon has been Hezbollah’s nest and for the IRA, the Republic of Ireland was the same. To eliminate this phenomenon in Lebanon Blair should move to establish an independent commission much along the same lines as that of the Independent International Commission on Decommissioning (IICD), which had as its task overseeing the relinquishment of weapons and arms by the PIRA.
He suggests a UN Security resolution and motivating the Shiites with a prisoner swap, and Israeli withdrawal from the disputed Shebaa farms. Lebanese politics would then need to include more representation for the heavily Shiite southern Lebanon so that the government’s sovereignty extends to the whole of the country.
He also suggests pressure on state legislatures and city councils to call for an immediate cease fire and to implement a plan like the one above to keep Lebanon from falling into another civil war or remaining fertile ground for violent and heavily armed militias like Hezbollah.Posted by James at August 1, 2006 10:09 PM