Almost a year ago, "terrorists" blew up and killed a top Lebanese general, prompting the then army commander to insensitively proclaim, on television, and to the victim's family nonetheless, that the army has plenty of other soldiers like Francois. On the first anniversary of his assassination, we hear some decisive language, but sadly not comforting.
A mass service was held in Hajj's memory in his hometown of Rmeish in south Lebanon.
"The day will come when the killers will be uncovered and put on trial," said Brig. Gen. Panos Manoujian who represented Defense Minister Elias Murr and Army chief Gen. Jean Qahwaji at the mass.
"Terrorists thought that by killing one of the pillars of the military institution, they could confuse the army and hinder its national role. However, the military tree is more solid and much higher with the martyr's blood," he said. (Naharnet)
So who are the "terrorists"? And where do their "malignant roots" grow? In Baabda, where he was killed? In Damascus or Tehran, where the president seems to be extending his own roots? It seems to me that the Lebanese military believes in the imaginary nation of Terrorism Land, where terrorists are born, bred and nurtured outside modern notions of time and space.
But then, Lebanese authorities cannot even distinguish traffic violators from law abiding citizens, so why expect them to see the roots of terror? That what we got, one year on, is a slight bending to the will of Assad as far as military policy is considered, shouldn't come as a surprise. Suleiman got the message, and he will never do it again. He has Aoun to learn from, and Hajj's blood to remind him of what fate awaits those who wage battles against Syria. They either become mentally unstable or get put on a death list. So creating a safe imaginary world will do.