Monday, May 21, 2007

Lebanon fails to keep track on Fatah Islam's activities at refugee camp

The Lebanese government is to blame for the fighting Sunday that now plagued the 12 refugee camps near Tripoli, Lebanon. With a population of more than 300,000 people, these refugee camps were transformed into a breeding ground for Muslim militants with ties to the Al-Qaeda group, which took advantage of the sub-human conditions of the refugees, who are not allowed to make a living nor join the mainstream of the Lebanese society.

Without jobs and steady sources of income to survive in a dog-eat-dog competition in that of the world, some of the refugees wouldn't have a choice but to bite the bullets. So when the Lebanese authorities pursued individuals who holed up themselves at the refugee camp site after committing a bank robbery nearby, the armed refugees fought back and the escalation of war ensued Sunday.

And for many years, the Lebanese government had allowed outsiders with sinister plans to dip their hands into the lives of the refugees, without even bothering to conduct a census on who are living within the camp premises. It's like ignoring a simple sickness to first spread all over the body before the patient had sought medical check up for his ailment. Later, the Lebanese government found out that it's too late because the Muslim militants with alleged ties to Al-Qaeda had already attracted a good number of new recruits inside the refugee camps.

What happened to Lebanon at this time is like a repeat performance of what transpired many months back when the Hezbollah abducted an Israel soldier stationed at the border. When the Hezbollah failed to return the soldier, the Israel military pounded targets identified to be where the Muslim extremists were holed up.

Now the problem is that they are using some of the innocent refugees as human shields by embedding themselves inside the camp site where many of the Palestinian families are staying right now. In this way, the Lebanese military can't just bombard the place without hurting those who have nothing to do with the problem.

How come this problem went this far? Political analysts theorized that the Fatah Islam, a radical Sunni Muslim group that has al-Qaeda style militancy and doctrine, could have been accumulating arms and weapons for a long time in preparation for a planned attack against Israel. Or it could be that the refugee camp was used as a launching pad for their sinister plans against those they considered enemies of Islam? When they ran out of funds to finance their illegal activities, they were forced to rob a bank and carted away some US$125,000 in loot.

So far, the explosion of violence that part of the world resulted to 27 soldiers killed and more than 20 fatalities on the part of the extremist group who resisted arrest.

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