An Open Letter to Human Rights Watch
From the Lebanese Foundation for Peace
"We Have Hundreds of Eye Witnesses to the Events at Sabra and Chatilla, Will You Call Them?"
Mr Hanny Megally
Human Rights Watch
350 Fifth Avenue, 34th Floor
New York, New York, 10118 USA
Telephone: (212) 216 1230
Facsimile: (212) 736 1300
June 28, 2001
Dear Mr Megally,
I feel it's my moral obligation to address your latest remarks on the Sabra & Chatilla affair asking President Bush to urge Prime Minister Sharon to cooperate with any investigation against him. I must take issue with your accusations that there is abundant evidence that war crimes and that crimes against humanity were committed at the Sabra and Chatilla Palestinian camps. You should know better, for as one of Egyptian origin who is expert in Arabic you realize the problem within the Islamic world of the problem in seeing events, truths, that have no significance to Islam and of the Islamic world ignoring other crimes of larger gravity that are not significant to the Muslim world.
Did you really assume that the Palestinians were attacked for no reason or that groups of civilian Christians suddenly developed a blood lust for Palestinians? Why did the Christians attack only Palestinians and not the Lebanese Muslims with whom they lived peaceably for centuries? The Christians have historically been a peaceful people who preferred to live in Lebanon in a historical balance with their Muslim neighbors, a friendly and respectable balance that existed until Yasir Arafat and his killers entered Lebanon.
Your myopic vision of the Sabra and Chatilla massacres ignores the massacres perpetrated by Yasser Arafat and his murderers against the Christian Lebanese. Let me remind you of some of Arafat's actions (I am an eye witness):
* The distribution of arms and money to the Islamists in Lebanon for the express purpose of subjecting the Christian Lebanese to ethnic cleansing.
* The massacre of the town of Chekka, in northern Lebanon, by Arafat forces, dozens of civilians, mostly Christians, were murdered and tortured by Arafat's hoodlums.
* In the massacre of the town of Damour, South of Beirut, dozens of Christians civilians were slaughtered, along with numerous rapes of young girls, were done by forces that came from those same Palestinian camps that you are defending.
* The massacre of the towns of Aintoura and Mtein, where groups of Palestinians murdered innocent Christian civilians solely because they were Christians .
* The daily assaults by the PLO forces against the Christian towns of Hadath, Ain-el Remmaneh, Jisr el Bacha, Dekaouneh, Beirut, and the Southern Metn, that resulted in hundred of Christian casualties murdered for defending their hometowns and existence. This was at a time when the Lebanese Government was paralyzed and could not send the Lebanese Army to halt the Palestinian atrocities due to Arab intervention in internal Lebanese affairs by the "Cairo" accords.
No, Mr Megally, Palestine's path to the submission of Lebanon does not begin at the Lebanese Christian Port of Junieh as stated in the famous phrase of Abu Ayad, Yasser Arafat second in command. There were no Israelis in Mount Lebanon to murder, they were all innocent Christian civilians massacred in hundreds of low intensity incidents (as in Israel today) just because they were Christians. The barbarism in Lebanon was an Arafat speciality. Christians were decapitated, girls were raped, parents and kids were murdered in the streets due to Palestinian military attacks against the Christians areas, as they refused to distinguish between adult men and women and children. All Christians, despite age or sex, were Palestinian targets. These were the same Palestinians we welcomed with open arms in 1948 with charity and our reward was death and torture.
Sabra and Chatilla was not a peaceful area where strangers entered for no reason and murdered innocent civilians. Sabra and Chatilla were one of the largest training centers for international terrorism. Most of the terrorists of the world visited the Sabra and Chatilla Camps in Beirut, received extensive training in terrorism, ranging from the use of plastic explosives to booby trapping cars, and special, assassination techniques given by well experienced followers of Yasser Arafat.
For example, the terrorist Red Brigades from Italy trained there, the terrorist Basque ETA movement, Carlos, Islamist mercenaries from Iraq, Libya, Yemen, Egypt, all came to those camps to be taught how to hijack planes, prepare bombs for use in Europe and elsewhere against US and Israeli embassies and missions. Sabra and Chatilla became known as the terror center in Beirut, whose mission was to export terror and subversion to the world. Many Lebanese were kidnaped to these camps and never returned alive.
The Christian Kataeb militias are no murderers Mr. Megally. They realized that the destruction of Lebanon by Palestinian hands could not continue and Lebanon could not be a training ground for international terror and murder. There was no proportionality in the two events as Sabra & Chatilla experienced about 800 executions, yet the Palestinians murdered 200,000 Lebanese on different occasions and places. Could you help open an investigation into the matter? Lebanese families, eye witnesses, will thank you and are eager to get their rights back in court from Arafat murderers if they have the chance. Can you arrange in the interests of justice to hear in the court in Belgium from hundreds of cases of Lebanese victims of Palestinian terrorism? Will you call as a witness Elias Hobeika a known Lebanese traitor and Syrian operative who incited the event without the knowledge or consent of Ariel Sharon in order to embarrass and blacken Ariel's Sharon's name?
Additional information you should be aware of is that sensitive information from Lebanese intelligence army sources show that Brigadier General Ghazi Kanaan, head of the Syrian Secret Service in Lebanon, is now pursuing a path of intimidation and threats through many channels against former Lebanese forces leaders to force them to testify in Lebanese courts against Ariel Sharon so as to relieve the pressure on Elias Hobeika.
No Christian Lebanese will apologize for the deaths of assassins and murders as their continued existence was at stake, and the Palestinian executions occurred with a deep revulsion for the taking of lives; however, these Palestinians were the victims of Yasir Arafat who precipitated the killings by supporting an existential evil that threatened the world. No Palestinian ever apologized for the destruction of Lebanon a country that hosted them with a friendly and open hands.
Sabra and Chatilla was no mistake, it was the Christian Community's inability to continue to suffer their extinction and their planned genocide that forced them to decide to halt once and for all Palestinian terrorism in Lebanon, a country that has suffered terribly from PLO terror while the world ignored us, making them willing accomplices. Don't blame the Christians or General Sharon. The Palestinians under Yasir Arafat and Elias Hobeika are responsible as well as a world that doesn't care.
Sabra and Chatilla is a nothing more than a political attempt by Yasser Arafat, backed by Hosni Mubarak and Saudi Arabia, to undermine and weaken Israel's Prime Minister Sharon. By doing so, they hope to force Israel to return to the concessions given by former Prime Minister Ehud Barak, an inexperienced, political player as compared to Prime Minister Sharon. This is a failed tactic that will lead nowhere as Sharon's political position is to encourage a meaningful peace in the Middle East and is much stronger than these failed maneuvers and lost attempts.
Mr Megally, your call to President Bush was inappropriate, as you failed to present the full picture of the past events by inappropriately judging one side and disregarding the offenses of the other party involved in the events, not to mention that Arafat who succeeded through the weakness of the Israeli left to import the chaos and revolution from his Tunisian exile to the heart of Israel.
Nagi N. Najjar
Director of the Lebanon Foundation for Peace