Monday, February 26, 2007

Justice for all?

Attention: This article has been rectified because it contained some errors. Please refer to the rectification

There was an interesting article in the French newspaper L’Orient – Le Jour this Saturday about Solida. This is an organization that lobbies for releasing Lebanese political prisoners. In the early days, they dedicated themselves mostly to liberating the Lebanese prisoners in Israeli jails, which gained them a reputation of being closely linked to the Resistance. Solida’s asking to release proven murderers from Israeli cells didn’t help their image either.

Later, with the departure of Syria, they tried to adjust their standing by also lobbying for the release of Lebanese prisoners in Syrian jails. Interesting enough, this move was never supported by Hezbollah although Nasrallah is always going on about releasing the Lebanese prisoners from foreign (read Israeli) cells.

Now, in this period where everybody seems to be forced to choose side, Solida has gone back to its presumed roots of being close to the Resistance. They have added a new group to their list of prisoners they feel are worth fighting for: the 8 people of the ancient pro-Syrian regime that have been imprisoned after the murder of Hariri! These people, four of which high ranking generals, were the top dogs of the security apparatus and have been in held in isolation for over a year and a half without any formal charges being brought forward.

Obviously, they are held in custody because of their involvement with the killing of Hariri, but it’s unclear if there is a legal basis for detaining them for so long. And the end is nowhere in sight, now with the UN Tribunal possibly being postponed ever further.

One can expect it to be a matter of time before Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch and other organizations start picking up on this because it’s such a great theme: even suspects have rights. But somehow I doubt that the generals will be released soon, or that many people care if they won’t…except for Solida, which out of so many prisoners to fight for, elected to dedicate their limited resources to the pro-Syrian generals.

Normally, I sympathize with Solida and I fully support their quest for releasing political prisoners, but it’s hard to escape the feeling that Solida’s current initiative has more to do with politics than with true concern over the well-being of the prisoners.

3 comments:

Fvdv said...

.... has more to do with politics than.....
isn't everything in Lebanon?
As long as you have wasta :)
(as you explained in an earlier blog).

So Lahoud warns to stay on, on what his allies call to be an unconstitutional cabinet.
A military hints at his presidential ambitions (where's he's wasta coming from?),
and in the article of Aoun "Learning nothing and forgetting nothing" I notice a change of mind -again- as to which side he should be standing?

It's learning nothing and forgetting everything, I'm afraid.

fvdv said...

So now it's RB&B in BL in ING instead of NL.
OK.
But under your list of bloggers: what's the sexy rubber band has to do with this - and that too being sponsored by google? Boogles the mind.
Anyway, success & succes!

Riemer Brouwer said...

@fvdv:
I wish you were right, that they would forget everything, like religion, family/regional ties, you know, all the private stuff that is way too much of a public importance in Lebanon.

As for sponsoring by Google, i don't notice this because i have ad blocker installed, one of the plug ins for Firefox web browser:-) Anyway, it should be gone, now.

Thanks for visiting my blog and welcome!