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No one cares for the speeches of Hezbollah Secretary General Hassan Nasrallah anymore. For years, satellite channels neglected to broadcast his speeches simply because people weren’t interested after they lost their luster and relevance. Yet, the speech he delivered recently on the anniversary of the July 2006 war was somewhat different, for it was delivered shortly after several of the Syrian regime's prominent leaders had been assassinated; leaders who were once considered to be the umbilical cord feeding and supporting Hezbollah. |
The speech was different this time as Nasrallah appeared apprehensive and anxious to an unprecedented degree, even more so than when he came out in August 2006 to beg the Arabs to mediate with the US and force Israel to end its bombardment of Lebanon. In his recent speech, Nasrallah tasted the bitterness of losing key symbols in the Syrian regime, whether as individuals, such as Assef Shawkat, or in their capacity as Syria's Ministers of Defense and Interior. Nasrallah was part of the crisis management cell administered by the Syrian regime's elements and adherers, considered to be the most aggressive and tyrannical entity involved in repressing the rebels. This is why he was telling the truth when he said that those killed were his comrades in arms.
The speech highlighted the state of panic that has engulfed the al-Assad regime's allies, who are now attempting to muster strength following the assassination of some of the regime's prominent leaders. However, the speech also contained rhetoric that was largely anticipated, as Nasrallah stressed his explicit support for Bashar al-Assad, and even extended his heartfelt condolences to the crisis management elements who lost their lives, despite the fact that they carried out massacres against Syrian civilians.
The speech touched upon two important issues that deserve to be contemplated: Firstly, Nasrallah demonstrated a great degree of simplicity and naivety in attempting to clean up Bashar al-Assad's face when thanking him for manufacturing the missiles that Hezbollah used against Israel in the summer 2006 war, and that Islamic resistance groups launched against Israel from Gaza. In fact, this was not an endorsement for Bashar, but rather an accusation. If al-Assad really had enough armament potential to defend Lebanon and Gaza, then why hasn’t he liberated the occupied Golan Heights, which are closer and more pertinent to Syria? Besides, the missiles used by Palestinian resistance factions are manufactured locally and are considered extremely primitive. Armament experts call them “cartoon missiles” because they are mere fire crackers that only produce noise; they fly off at random directions and never hit their targets. Even when Bashar al-Assad tried to bring Syria into the domain of manufacturing nuclear warheads, when he built a small facility in Deir al-Zour deep in the Syrian soil, Israeli troops infiltrated the site and spent a full night there inspecting, examining and collecting samples, whilst Bashar al-Assad and his army leaders were all asleep.