The Salafi Connection

“There’s a relationship between ourselves and Sheik Saad when it’s needed,” Shahal said. “The biggest Sunni political power is Hariri. The biggest Sunni religious power are the Salafis. So it’s natural.”


8 Replies to “The Salafi Connection”

  1. great causal conencting chain,

    superb quote


    that is the missing link indeed

    you did it

    i knew you had the capacity to do it

  2. No its not a great causal connection.

    The reporter is trying to project a phenomenon happening in other places in the Middle East onto Lebanon. She uses two or three unrelated events, and she uses a very small minority of people to push her point and project it onto a majority.

    You’re trying to make a whole sweater out of a thread.

  3. bj, i believe f.t.m. is being sarcastic 🙂

    and what “sweater” am i exactly trying to make? there is a connection between he who was quoted and saad. do you deny that? (as to whether this connection led to the current violence is another story, and one i’m not touching upon here.)

  4. Hey M,

    I was referring to the connection to the current violence. You said that you weren’t alluding to that here but honestly, given the other posts on this site, the jump isn’t a hard one to make.

    Look, I’ll cut to the chase. I’m not trying to push a party line here or anything like that. Its just that when this conflict broke out, people jumped up and tried to absolve Syria of all and any guilt related to this crisis, even when the information linking them to it was widely available. There was also an attempt to link Hariri family funding to various Sunni groups to a Seymoure Hersh article citing ‘informed sources’ as saying that the gov’t was training a Sunni army to fight Hizballah. That article was successfully deconstructed, on the Lebanon front at least, by a number of people including respected editors, journalists, and bloggers even.

    There are still questions unanswered we can all agree, but when the country is so clearly under attack, I don’t understand why everyone can’t unite behind building defenses (no matter that they’re not perfect) to protect us from these attacks before trying to trip up those who are at the moment working on building those defenses.

    Once we have at least secured a viable future for the state, we can work on fixing its imperfections.

    Thats all I’m trying to say.

    …yes yes, bring on the nitpicking…

  5. bj, you really live in a fantasy world (albeit a twisted ugly fantasy), a world where your “country is under attack” as if there is such a country, a world where “Syria is evil” without logical political causes to it and as if Syria has clear decision-making process, a world where your analysis are so poor that it arouses more pity than anything else.

    So I don’t know what to say, and I really don’t know how one can help you. Maybe you should save your energy to copy paste naharnet to your blog?

  6. BJ,

    Unfortunately, it isn’t only Hersh’s article that has pointed to that, but it made the rounds because it was published in western press. Relationships between the Hariri family (i.e Saad) and salafists were known for the past couple of years, and also made the scene during the 2005 elections. And then there was the Dinniyeh incident …

    Anyways, since we are on the topic of Hersh, a blogger on THIS blog (surprise?) also criticized the article …

    Just to clarify, since I may be behind on Lebanese news – who exactly is building Lebanon’s defences? Hezballah? Jumblatt? Hariri? Geagea? Aoun? Lahoud? Or are they building defenses around their own power base, which is probably the more likely scenario ….

    There will be no “viable future for lebanon” as long as people continue to argue along the current parameters of discourse set by the political elite, as long as there is no executable platforms of accountability, and as long as there are no (non-violent) institutions that allow people to successfully air their grievances. Defense is of course fundamental, but building a state is not a linear process …

  7. bech, seriously man, your insight on Lebanon starts and ends with “as if there is such a country”.

    I didn’t address you in my reply to M. because I was already aware of this, theres no point talking to you. As a matter of fact, given that you’re the only contributor on this blog now, theres no point coming back here anymore. Apokraphyte and M. are alright, but you’re not worth it.

    I’m not denying that they have a relationship, but I just don’t think that they are the prime movers behind this incident.

    As for other incidents, such as Dinnieh, there were other factors at play then also which should not be discounted.

    Anyway I’m finished with this site, if you’re interested in continuing the conversation send me an email or leave a comment at my blog, Blacksmiths of Lebanon (apparently bech old boy couldn’t bring himself to type the name in properly in his blog list for over 3 months, funny).


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