Secretary-General of Hezbollah, Hassan Nasrallah, during his live speech on the occasion of the group’s Martyrs’ day on 11 November 2022 (Photo Credit: Hezbollah’s Media Unit via Al-Manar)
The Secretary-General of Hezbollah, Hassan Nasrallah rebuked statements made by US Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs, Barbara Leaf, and took aim at the US for its destructive role in Lebanon in a speech commemorating Martyrs’ Day.
During his live TV address on 11 November, Nasrallah called the US “the curse, plague, and epidemic” that afflicts Lebanon.
“If the 1982 [Israeli] invasion was a curse and an epidemic that we got rid of, it was a plague made in the US. You are damned,” Nasrallah added.
His words were in response to the statement made by Leaf on 4 November, when she said in no uncertain terms that the collapse of Lebanon and its destruction was the only way to “somehow rebuild it from the ashes, freed from the curse of Hezbollah.”
Nasrallah went on to say: “No matter how many times you kick out the US, they will infiltrate again as there are no limits to its greed and goals,” before accusing Washington of being behind the the “plague of ISIS and Al-Nusra front that occupied Lebanon’s northeastern borders.”
He accused the US of protecting those behind the violence caused by an armed Christian militia in the Tayouneh neighborhood of Beirut last year. He also took Washington to task for its “ill intentions” and funding of the Lebanese army solely for the purpose of preparing it to fight the resistance.
Nasrallah’s remarks came in response to Leaf’s open acknowledgement of training Lebanese activists in the US to lead the 2019 protests, and the generous funding of NGOs to sustain their operations in Lebanon.
مساعدة وزير الخارجية الاميركي لشؤون الشرق الأدنى باربارا ليف في لقاء نظّمه "معهد ويلسون" عن السياسة الاميركية في لبنان (٢):
"أحضرنا مجموعات من الNGOs في لبنان وقمنا بتدريبهم لأشهر، وأعتقد أن تمويلهم من اهم الامور حاليًا"#وقائع pic.twitter.com/YA6wzUxqlB
— وقائع (@waqa2e3) November 8, 2022
The Hezbollah chief went on to stress that Iran wants to help the Lebanese people and the state in light of the severe electricity crisis, and pointed out that US pressure on the Lebanese government remains the main obstacle.
He continued by calling out US lies about its intentions to allow Lebanon to import gas and electricity from Jordan and Egypt via Syria, while denying any US goodwill regarding its efforts in finalizing the maritime deal with Israel.
Regarding the results of the Israeli elections, and the rise of Benjamin Netanyahu and the far-right to power again, Nasrallah says no change in Israel’s foreign policy can be extepected, as there is no actual difference between the various Israeli parties.
“All Israeli governments are made of criminals, who occupy [our lands], and are void of any moral and human values,” Nasrallah said.
He also called Netanyahu’s promise to nullify the maritime agreement with Lebanon an “empty threat,” which will not materialize, adding that Lebanon posses enough power to safeguard the deal by force.
“Lebanon is protected by God, then the unity of its army, people, and resistance. We are strong and this enemy, whether it is right or left-leaning, understands force and the language of force only,” said Nasrallah.