|ISIL is a monster that threatens everyone: Nasrallah||
Hezbollah Secretary General Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah has described the ISIL takfiri terrorists as an existential threat to Lebanon and the entire region, insisting that if “this monster” is left undeterred, it will keep growing.
“We have to believe that there is a real existential danger threatening us all and it is not a joke,” Nasrallah said in a televised speech marking the anniversary of the end of the July 2006 Israeli war on Lebanon that ended in the retreat of the Zionist forces after suffering their worst military defeat after facing fierce resistance by Hezbollah forces.
“This danger does not recognize Shias, Sunnis, Muslims, Christians, Druze, Izadis, Arabs or Kurds. This monster is growing and getting bigger,” said Nasrallah.
He further emphasized that despite the [deliberate] portrayal of ISIL as an anti-Shia force, the takfiri terrorist “massacres have primarily harmed Sunnis.”
“Lebanese and all people of the region must put all differences aside,” he said. “I call on every Lebanese, Palestinian, Iraqi, Syrian and any [Persian] Gulf national to leave sectarian intolerance behind and think that this phenomenon is not a threat against Shias only. No one should regard this battle as a sectarian one, it is a takfiri war against anyone who opposed it.”
“We must be aware of this threat's potentials. Those who say nothing is happening are completely detached from reality,” Nasrallah said, referring to comments by Lebanon’s presidential candidate Samir Geagea who dismissed the danger ISIL represents for his country.
Nasrallah strongly challenged the idea that Hezbollah’s retreat from Syria would make Lebanon less likely to be targeted by ISIL terrorists.
“Critics say Hezbollah needs to leave Syria, but do you really think this will stop ISIL?” He asked. “Others suggested Lebanon disassociate itself from the Syrian conflict, but do you really think this will protect Lebanon?”
Nasrallah pointed out that other Lebanese political parties have not disassociated from the Syrian conflict, but weren’t as harshly criticized for it as Hezbollah.
The prominent resistance leader also mocked the idea of placing UNIFIL troops along the border with Syria, saying “UNIFIL can't even protect itself.”
Nasrallah then went on to call for a unified regional action to counter ISIS.
“We are able to combat the ISIL threat. It won't be fought with inaction, but through unity and sacrifice,” he said. “We will not let them invade our countries, destroy our churches and our mosques. We will fight to stay in our countries.”
He cautioned the region against falling into sectarian discourse, saying this would only weaken their fight against the foreign-sponsored ISIL terrorists.
“Sectarian incitement from anyone is as dangerous as a car bomb,” he said. “It should be dealt with seriously.”
“Don't pack your suitcases and leave,” Nasrallah implored Lebanese citizens. “Stay and fight for your honor and existence. Lebanon can change the fate of the region.”
Nasrallah also emphasized that Hezbollah fully supported the Lebanese army as the most important actor against a potential ISIL aggression against Lebanon.
“We all need to support the army, especially in terms of morale,” he said.
“Every minute Lebanese soldiers remain abducted by ISIL is a humiliation for Lebanon. The government must do everything to get them back,” he added, referring to several Lebanese soldiers who have been held by ISIL terrorists near Arsal.
“The government also needs to appease tensions between Lebanese towns like Ersal, Hermel and their neighbors, and between Jabal Mohsen and Bab al-Tabbaneh [in Tripoli].”
“And even if some people don't want to hear this, the Lebanese government should work with the Syrian government,” Nasrallah added. “It is the only way to deal with refugees.”
The Hezbollah chief dismissed Western powers’ intervention in Iraq, accusing the U.S. of only getting involved once its strategic interests became threatened.
“The international community did not react when ISIS killed Christians in Mosul, or when the Kurds, Sunnis and Shias got killed in Kirkuk,” he said. “But when ISIL reached Irbil, where U.S. has interests, the US stood up. It’s not that they care about the Kurds, it’s because of what Irbil means to them strategically.”
Nasrallah said ISIL “served U.S. interests, whether they know it or not,” and tied the 2006 war to a broader Western plan to try and destroy the anti-Zionist resistance.
“The 2006 war was a fundamental part of a chain of events that tried to crush the Resistance,” he said. “And the plan to crush the Resistance in Gaza is the same as the one in Lebanon in 2006.”
“Can we defeat them and their plans? We can. We did it before and we can do it now,” Nasrallah reiterated.
Subscribe to our RSS feed to stay in touch and receive all of TT updates right in your feed reader