An Event and a Regional Trend

Condensed meetings that join the sides of Sharm esh-Sheik group take place in the presence of US representatives of Elliott Abrams, official of the Middle East file at the US national Security Council. The specialized committees that emanated from these meetings are studying, according to an Arab diplomatic source, the conditions in Lebanon and Palestine and will take financial measures against Hezbollah, Hamas, the Islamic Jihad and the civil organizations linked to these groups. This will cover banking pressures and operations against Lebanese and Palestinians individuals, companies and societies under the title of implementing the US administration under the title of fighting terror.
On the security level, the joint committees exchange information and put joint plans to chase names and activities that the Arab team will be informed about directly by the Americans. Meanwhile, the Palestinian presidency’s security organs and the loyal Lebanese militias are receiving training and financing under three titles: the security corporations, the internal security forces, and the Future bloc, the Progressive party and the Lebanese forces. The available information said that the special training courses for the loyalists take place in Jordan, where 300 elements that belong to the Future bloc will graduate and take positions in Beirut.

An Event and a Lebanese Trend

Political and press circles focused on what happened during the meeting between representative Walid Jumblatt and leader of the army Michel Suleiman. Identical information confirmed that Jumblatt was clear in rejecting electing Suleiman as a president. The press said Jumblatt discussed with the army’s leader a set of topics that reflect pessimistic security anticipations in the light of the presidential merit’s developments and the climate of confrontation that the country may witness. Junblat also stressed his rejection of the military institution’s revealing of information that exonerate Syria from the accusations, using the example of the information branch and its silence over the involvement of fundamentalist groups in the assassination of prime minister Rafiq Al-Hariri. This brings to mind Walid Jumblatt’s criticism of Michel Suleiman’s declaration about Naher Al-Bared Camp’s battles.
Jumblatt’s attempt concentrated on persuading Suleiman to accept the US policies in Lebanon and the area and breaking the neutrality of the army’s leader in the internal conflict with many hints and threats used by the US assistant secretary of state David Welch in his previous meeting with the army’s leader.
A foreign journalist,who recently met Jumblatt in Beirut, said that Junblat is confident that an imminent Israeli war against Hezbollah and Syria will take place and focuses on the necessity of agreeing on the president and continuing the policy of adopting the US priorities against Syria and Hezbollah at any cost. Until this war happens, Lebanon will be in a new balance that allows the loyalists to take the initiative. Hence, press sources in Beirut say that Junblat was summoned to the United States, and specifically to New York, to heat the discussion of internationalizing the presidential merit, which may include establishing an international security zone that extends between the harbor and the government’s headquarters and cover the headquarters of the parliament under the title of protecting the merit in the light of Al-Siniora’s memo to the UN secretary general.

Arab and international Press

The Iranian Official Radio said that the spiritual leader of the Iranian Islamic republic Ali Khamenei publicly supported the students’ criticisms of president Ahmadinejad, saying criticism of the leadership is required.
International Press Agencies said that the US Pentagon has disclosed a plan about an unprecedented increase in the number of the US forces. This pushed analysts to deduce that this means US plans to launch new wars.
The Emirate paper Al-Khaleej said it seems that what Iraq needs now is the Turkish invasion of its north and the pretext now is the operations of the PKK, adding that this will violate again Iraq’s sovereignty.
Al-Bayan said that when an Arab writer says the Israeli lobby has encouraged the US to invade Iraq, some Arab writers will criticize him as quickly as possible, but what is their stand towards two US respected academicians who say this in a book entitled the Israeli Lobby and the US Foreign Policy?
David Edwards said, in an article published in an Arab paper, that in an attempt to launch a preemptive attack on any one that may accuse him and to abort any criticism about the report on enhancing the US forces in Iraq, president Bush claimed that the US withdrawal from Iraq will lead to a big disaster.

Lebanese Press

As-Safir said: in Bkerki today, there is a word for history and an impossible mission.
Al-Akhbar said the parliamentary majority has belittled the importance of Bkerki’s meetings.
An-Nahar said the House Speaker Nabih Berri beseeched Syria and Saudi Arabia to achieve a conciliation concerning Lebanon.

Television Stations’ News in Lebanon

Al-Manar said after the catastrophe of defending Israel, there is now the catastrophe of defending the US, which is a partner in Israel’s crimes against Lebanon, came.
The NTV said the signs of the president will appear on Friday in the meeting with the loyalists in Bkerki.
The NBN wondered about the reasons for escalating the campaign against secretary general of Hezbollah saying this derives its legitimacy from the timing and the statements of the parliamentary majority.
The OTV said there will be a surprise in Bkerki, but details are still unknown.
The LBC said it is probable that Bkerki’s meetings will fail.
The Future said Turkish Foreign Minister Ali Babajan will visit Beirut on October 19 and this is the preliminary date for the visit of the foreign ministers of Italy, Spain and France.

Television Stations’ Interviews in Lebanon

NBN _Program: Useful Summary
Representative Ghassan Tuéni said the division among Christians is an evidence on the lack of wisdom and shortsightedness, pointing out that Lebanon’ message doed not belong the Maronites, and the talk that the Maronite are the ones who made Lebanon and will now dismember it is wrong. He added that he pins hopes on Berri’s initiative.

Tendencies is a daily political watch newsletter about the Near East, issued by New Orient News agency in Beirut, Lebanon. It is available on in Arabic, English and French languages. Also worth a read is Indicators, the daily Near East economic watch newsletter, available in Arabic and English.