I've become quite a fan of some of the critical pieces that have begun appearing in the Lebanese Daily Star in the past months. Of course, there are the obligatory condemnations of Israel, but I sense an openess among its editors, including a willingness to publish articles by Israelis. One of the paper's real stars is Michael Young, who serves as the paper's opinion editor but is widely published and also blogs actively.
Young really made my day, with his latest piece on Hizbullah and its refusal to disarm or to dissolve into the Lebanese military and to respect Lebanese sovereignty. In his op-ed piece ("What's Hizbullah's problem with the army?" - May 25, 2006) he shows how Hizbullah's position is endangering Lebanese stability and he also takes a shoot at poor old Noam Chomsky, who, during his visit to Lebanon on May 13, really seems to have put his foot in his mouth. Apparently,
The visiting Noam Chomsky [...] declared it a "reasonable position" that Hizbullah retain its weapons "until there is a general political settlement in the region and the threat of aggression and violence is reduced or eliminated.As Young notes,
That could be a long time, certainly longer than most Lebanese groups are willing to give the party without themselves beginning to arm.Seems like Chomsky's revolutionary fervour just got the best of him. I'm struck as usual by Chomsky's arrogance and righteousness. What gives an MIT linguist the right to jeopardize the average Lebanese person's prospects of living in a stable society governed by the rule of law and not by armed militias?
More details on Chomsky's ass-kissing in southern Lebanon can be found in the partial transcript of the al-Manar (Hizbullah TV-Station) coverage of his visit published in MEMRI's Special Dispatch - No. 1165.