Thursday, April 26, 2007

A Parley with Toufeili

Sheikh Sobhi Toufeili has come out of hiding to give an interview to 'TIME' magazine. The former secretary-general provided interesting insight into the inner workings of Hizballah, and its inception, during the 1980's when he was in charge.

According to Toufeili, "Hezbollah is no longer a real liberation force but just a tool for Iranian interests. Hezbollah has become a very bad and corrupt organization."

As for the 1982 bombing of the Marine barracks, he admits that Hizballah was behind the operation and explains, "The Marines were not civilians. I considered the Americans as an occupying force and I fought them." But despite being "proud" of the operation he insists he had no part in it: "If I had had anything to do with it I would say so because my relations with the Americans are not so good."

When asked about the American hostages that went missing in Lebanon throughout the 80's, the cleric reveals that during negotiations surrounding their release, "We discovered that the hostages were a big treasure for Iran. They wanted to sell the hostages piece by piece."

Toufeili now lives in isolation somewhere in the hills east of the Bekaa valley. He was instrumental in bringing the Iranian Revolutionary Guards to Lebanon in 1982 to set the organization up and recruit local Lebanese Shia. He is now considered a traitor and an outlaw by the current leaders of Hizballah, both in Lebanon and Iran.

Photo: The "Mahdi Scouts" marching in Beirut

Read original article from TIME

3 comments:

  1. So now you are Blacksmiths with an S? Does it mean you are the official Bitar family of Lebanon blog?

    ReplyDelete
  2. Two Blacksmiths for the price of one Ms Levantine. Now if that ain't a great deal I don't know what is!

    ;)

    As for the Bitar family...what?

    ReplyDelete
  3. JaafarJr.4:11 PM

    Hello Mr.Bitar. How are you? i like your blog. It's solid. Like the good solid Bitar family.

    ReplyDelete

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