May 12, 2008

WHICH IS EXACTLY THE EFFORT WHAT THEY'RE DEFENDING DESERVES:

Lebanon's Sunni bloc built militia, officials say: The Future movement used a security firm to assemble a private force, officials say. But the fighters were no match for the Shiite group Hezbollah (Borzou Daragahi and Raed Rafei, May 12, 2008, LA Times)

For a year, the main Lebanese political faction backed by the United States built a Sunni Muslim militia here under the guise of private security companies, Lebanese security experts and officials said.

The fighters, aligned with Saad Hariri's Future movement, were trained and armed to counter the heavily armed Shiite Muslim militant group Hezbollah and protect their turf in a potential military confrontation.

But in a single night late last week, the curious experiment in private-sector warfare crumbled.

Attacked by Hezbollah, the Future movement fighters quickly fled Beirut or gave up their weapons. Afterward, some of the fighters said they felt betrayed by their political patrons, who failed to give them the means to protect themselves while official security forces stood aside and let Hezbollah destroy them.

"We are prepared to fight for a few hours but not more," said one of the Sunni fighters in the waning moments of the battle.

Posted by Orrin Judd at May 12, 2008 6:24 AM
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