Standing on the sidelines, there are the 200,000 odd permanent Palestinian refugees in Lebanon. They are not Lebanese citizens. They have no political vote, are overwhelmingly Sunni, are excluded from good jobs, and therefore good housing. They are excluded from many Lebanese schools. They and those who came before them have been living in those camps on a kind of "dole" from the UN for a long time, many of them for 50 years. They have no prospects, zero. People who have no prospects are dangerous.
So, they are susceptible to the takfiri jihadi message and influence drifting on the winds of the internets and in the minds of returned fighters from Iraq. Not surprisingly some of them have accepted the call, the call to drive foreign, kaffir influence out of the Lebanon, the call to vent their rage against a political system that offers them nothing...
The 24/7 news networks were hard at work today trying to make Syria responsible for the Sunni zealots in the camps. The statement was being made today that these groups were connected to AQ. No evidence was offered, but the assertion was repeatedly made based on the "possibility" that had supposedly been voiced by some nameless person in the Lebanese government. Various Lebanese were asked that question - "Is this Al-Qa'ida?" Nobody could be found who was willing to say that there was an organizational link to Al-Qa'ida, but the question was asked over and over again. This question was paired with another - "Is Syria controlling and "behind" this group?" Nobody could be found who would say that either, but the question was asked over and over again.
Now, think about it, folks Al-Qa'ida is a virulently anti-Shia Sunni group. Everyone "knows" how much Syria supports Hizbullah, a virulently anti-Sunni Shia group. So, which is it? Which side does the syrian government support? Does the Syrian government support both at the same time? If you believe that, then you really are a sucker for propaganda.
It would be interesting to know who sets the agenda for the content of 24/7 news. Very interesting. pl
The press continues to be mindless stenographers of right-wingers who scream "Al Qaeda" for ANYTHING that isn't in lock-step with their "good news" blackout. It is the most shallow and erroneous reporting going on from the talking heads in Washington -- and everybody knows it is also not only what the Bush Administration wants to say -- it is also the ONLY thing they ever want to hear.
It's poisonous, it's self-defeating, it's tragic, and it WON'T FUCKING STOP!