The Mideastwire Blog

Excerpts from the Arab and Iranian Media & Analysis of US Policy in the Region

Voice of America talks to (yet another talkative, helpful) “Hezbollah commander” who spills the beans

The surreal, counter-productive aspect of the last few years of so much reporting on Hezbollah is, in part, illustrated in this “Voice of America” piece written (from who knows where) by Jamie Dettmer.

Dettmer naturally talks to a Hezbollah “special forces commander”… who naturally says something that is – in one reading – damaging for the Party. NOTE that he also goes the extra mile and pluralizes the word “commanders” then talks to… ONE commander (add this to the unlikely aspect of the encounter in the first place).

“…That practical experience could be of use in any subsequent conflict with Israel. Hezbollah commanders acknowledge the benefits.

“In some ways, Syria is a dress rehearsal for our next war with  Israel,” a special forces Hezbollah commander admitted to VOA recently.

Then we have Matt Levitt – who is a very smart analyst and former Bush official – but who, I believe, has NEVER visited Lebanon (On second thought, I think he may have told me he had one brief official visit more than a decade ago… a real in-and-out). Matt is sure from his far away vantage point that there was “a lot of backlash to Hezbollah” from its natural community, the Shia.

“…The Islamic State has been a saving grace for Hezbollah’s recruitment efforts,” says Levitt. Until the bombings and the rise of the Islamic State, “there was a lot of backlash to Hezbollah,” he adds. “Hezbollah is seen as the only one capable of defending Shi’ites from the onslaught of the radical Sunnis…”

— The point here is not to disagree with the conclusions – some of which I would of course criticize – but rather to point out how unhelpful these types of pieces are for actually understanding what is happening. Same old story.

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Written by nickbiddlenoe

April 28, 2016 at 6:29 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

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