Flynt Leverett Commenting on Hezbollah


This evening on “The News Hour with Jim Lehrer“, my new colleague at the New America Foundation and former staff member of the CIA, State Department and White House National Security Council, Flynt Leverett, will be sharing his knowledge base about Hezbollah.
Flynt Leverett, Juan Cole, and I just had a discussion about the brewing mess in the Middle East before he went to the studio.
Juan Cole and I are now off to meet the French Ambassador at a Bastille Day celebration — in part to get a European take on the two-front war Israel is now facing.
More soon.
— Steve Clemons


18 comments on “Flynt Leverett Commenting on Hezbollah

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  9. Claire Brown says:

    Sorry for repeating myself! It’s been a long and very hard week, and just keeping up with Lebanon and Gaza on a minute by minute basis and trying to condense it into a half hour show with other topics and interviews has literally driven me crazy.
    It’s just that after I finished yesterday I turned on CNN to see the total B.S. they’re spewing about “violation of sovereignty” so I’ve been posting all over the place since I finished on Friday trying to get the word out about who actually violated whose sovereignty (sorry, I can’t even spell anymore, and the word won’t come up on my spell check…)
    And Steve’s readers are the type who would be interested in watching INN World Report as we do go to the source to get the real news on the Middle East. We’re incorruptible because we are entirely viewer supported, unlike the corporate mouthpieces that pass for news channels in the U.S.
    I apologize again for the repeat, honestly, I’m usually not so sloppy. It’s just stress and fear, and I really do fear, for this country and for the world.


  10. Claire Brown says:

    Yesterday (Friday, July 14, 2006) INN World Report had on British journalist Jonathan Cook, author of “Blood and Religion: The Unmasking of the Jewish and Democratic State.” Cook lives in Israel and is very well-informed. Anyway, he alerted us to a small news item from the June 25th edition of the U.K. Guardian that has been overlooked but is EXTREMELY significant.
    Here it is with the URL:
    The British Guardian reported on June 25, 2006: “Israeli forces have detained two Palestinians, who the army said were Hamas militants, in the Gaza Strip, in what observers said was the first arrest raid in the territory since Israel pulled out of the area a year ago.”,,1805354,00.html
    The Israeli soldier Cpl Gilad Shalit was abducted on June 25. Get it? Israel went into Gaza and arrested two suspected Hamas militants THE DAY BEFORE GILAD SHALIT WAS CAPTURED. Now who’s talking about violating sovereignty?
    Not to mention that Ha’aretz initially reported that Israel had planned the abduction of the Hamas government JUST AFTER THE ELECTION IN JANUARY, then switched the story to a few weeks before Shalit’s capture — either way Israel had this plan well in advance of Shalit’s capture.
    Two other things to note:
    – according to the Israeli papers the IDF knew tunnels were being built in Gaza so one would venture to guess that an efficient military would have been planning for something along the lines of a possible fight and looking for *militants* to pop their heads out of the ground.
    – The second is that Israeli papers last week, after the *capture* of the Israeli soldiers by Hizbullah (which occurred on Lebanese soil according to early reports — see the Asia Times — then the location of the capture mysteriously switched to Israeli territory) said that Israeli military intelligence had been warning about just this possibility for a very long time but their warnings weren’t heeded. Kind of like, oh, September 11…
    You can see the Cook interview as well as the Mearsheimer interview at our site:
    And Mustafa, INN World Report covers the sort of topics you suggested every single day. I personally read a wide variety of the papers in the Middle East daily in order to get an accurate picture of what is happening. Also, we did invite Professor Cole on but I never heard back.
    We hope to have Dean Stephen Walt on soon as a compliment to our Mearsheimer interview. Back in April, we had on Mary Kay Wilmers, the editor-in-chief of the London Review of Books and the publisher of “The Israel Lobby & U.S. Foreign Policy” I’ll see if I can get that interview from the archives and put it back on the front page of the INN World Report site — that paper has never been more significant.


  11. Carroll says:

    Very good explaination on Hezbollah I thought.
    And from what I understand of the Arab culture, which is limited so I could be wrong, the idea that if enough of them are put under attack it will to force them against the other Arabs and their interest I don’t see as working very well. I do see how bombing Lebanon would incite Iran and Syria and draw them into the fray. Which I think is the Israelis point anyway.
    Adds to my thinking that Israel cannot win an Arab war with Hezbollah in the lead even with their military superiority. No, I think this would be a war of attrition. Unless they outright bomb Syria and Iran into absolute stone age rubble with the millions of dead that would entail they will be bled dry a la gorilla just like we being bled out in Iraq. The question is what would they do at that point, something even more extreme?
    Also confirms to me that the Israelis are flat out insane, but sane enough to know time is against them, and are doing a now or never. Because they hope to squeeze their current actions into the usual pro Israel stance taken by the US political parties for the Jewish hawk vote and AIPAC stealth pac campaign funds into our next elections. And before the growing questioning by the public of all things Israeli in our policies turns into a public uproar and scares even the politicans off their Israeli fetish.
    I would say it’s going to be interesting to watch this unfold except that seems a really callous understatment considering the death and destruction this is going to cause.


  12. Mustafa says:

    Hi Claire,
    Please devote a segment or two about the fundamentalist Shia factions holding the reins of power in Iraq.
    I can guarantee you that most Americans have no idea who the hell the Al Dawa party and the Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution of Iraq are.
    Prof. Juan Cole would do a great job.
    I can also guarantee you that most Americans have no idea that in Iraq Bush and his supporters in the GOP *inadvertently* fathered a burgeoning fundamentalist Islamic republic which has extremely close and long standing ties to Iran, a so-called `axis of evil’, a country whose leader has vowed to `wipe Israel off the map’ and has sociopathically denied the fact of the Holocaust.
    While I am at it, I can also guarantee you that most Americans have no idea that in Iraq Bush and his supporters in the GOP *inadvertently* fathered a burgeoning fundamentalist Islamic republic in direct response to the horrific attacks of 9/11.
    9/11 + Iraq = Bush’s Fundamentalist Islamic Middle East


  13. Claire says:

    My name is Claire Brown and I’m a producer for INN World Report, one of only two TV news show with the guts to broadcast what is really happening in the Middle East, perhaps because we’re completely viewer-sponsored so we don’t have to answer to any corporate interest. We’ve invited Steve on the show but so far he’s given no answer.
    Yesterday and the day before we had on Professor John Mearsheimer, co-author of “The Israel Lobby & U.S. Foreign Policy” in a very rare interview. Professor Mearsheimer discussed “The Israel Lobby” paper as well as what is happening now in the Middle East. If anyone is interested go to our website.
    Today we had on Jonathan Cook, a journalist living in Israel. Mr. Cook spoke about the fact, as reported in the U.K Guardian, that Israeli forces had actually gone into Gaza the day before the Shalit capture to capture suspected members of Hamas.
    Should I repeat that – or do you get it? Israel did the first strike offense on capture in Gaza. Come to our website or watch our show if you want more info.


  14. GQ says:

    Under those circumstances, it could be argued that Hezbollah was acting against occupiers.
    There are a lot of ways to argue things. Problem is, it’s always a justification for the violence that has just taken place. The only way to solve the problems is to start acting like 21st century adults.


  15. Leigh says:

    I heard Mr. Leverett, and I thought the most interesting thing he said was that the Israelis that ere wounded and kidnapped were in the Shabaa (sp?) Farms area. This is the land that Israel has refused to return to Lebanon.
    Under those circumstances, it could be argued that Hezbollah was acting against occupiers.


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