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First Martyrdom Anniversary of Hajj Qassem Soleimani, Hajj Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, and their Companions

 

Sayyed Nasrallah’s Full Speech on Hezbollah Martyr’s Day

Sayyed Nasrallah’s Full Speech on Hezbollah Martyr’s Day
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Translated by Staff

Speech of Secretary General His Eminence Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah on Hezbollah Martyr’s Day - 11/11/2020

I seek refuge in Allah from the accursed Satan. In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious the Merciful. Praise be to Allah, Lord of the Worlds, and prayers and peace be upon our Master and Prophet, the Seal of Prophets, Abi al-Qassem Muhammad Bin Abdullah and his good and pure household and his good and chosen companions and all the prophets and messengers.

Peace and God's mercy and blessings be upon you all.

Allah Almighty says in His glorious book:

{In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious the Merciful. Among the believers are men true to what they promised Allah. Among them is he who has fulfilled his vow [to the death], and among them is he who awaits [his chance]. And they did not alter [the terms of their commitment] by any alteration. Allah Most Great has spoken the truth.}

Brothers and sisters, today we commemorate Hezbollah Martyr’s Day. The schedule is the same. The content is as usual. First, I will say a few words regarding the occasion, then I will discuss other issues or topics as I promised previously, including:

1- The demarcation of the maritime border

2- The latest “Israeli” military drills

3- The US elections, most importantly the impacts on us in the near future

4- The US policy in Lebanon and the sanctions

5- The domestic situation.

God willing, we will speak as briefly as possible.

But before I begin talking about the occasion and since we are commemoration the martyrs, I have to perform some moral duties towards some people who are dear to us in the region – and according to a chronological sequence.

First of all, I extend my condolences to the Syrian leadership and people, to our Syrian brothers and sisters, on the martyrdom of His Eminence Sheikh Adnan Al-Afyouni (may Allah have mercy on him), the Mufti of Damascus and its countryside and the general supervisor of Al-Sham International Islamic Center for Countering Extremism. I extend special condolences to his honorable family.

Secondly, I extend my condolences to our Yemeni sisters and brothers, leadership and people, on the martyrdom of Mr. Hassan Zaid (may Allah have mercy on him), the secretary general of Al-Haq Party in Yemen and the minister of sports and youth in the steadfast Yemeni government. I also extend special condolences to his honorable family.

Thirdly, I renew my condolences to the Palestinian people and my brothers in the Islamic Jihad Movement, to my brothers and sisters in the Islamic Jihad Movement in Palestine on the annual anniversary of the martyrdom of the great leader Bahaa Abu Al-Atta (may Allah have mercy on him), and special condolences to his family.

I also condole the Palestinians, brothers and sisters, leadership, factions, and people on the martyrdom of the detainee and mujahid brother Kamal Abu Waer who was martyred in an “Israeli” prison. This is a painful incident. What is more painful is that it puts all the Palestinian detainees in “Israeli” prisoners in grave danger that needs not only Palestinian action, but also international, Arab, and Islamic action.

We definitely salute the souls of all the martyrs that are still sacrificing their souls and blood in different arenas of confrontation in the axis of resistance – in Palestine, in Yemen, in Syria, in Iraq, in Iran, and in every front where fighting for righteousness is taking place.

We also congratulate prisoner and brother Maher Al-Akhras on his victory over the shackles and his jailers, which he created with his great patience and undeterred will.

Every year on the 11th of November – that is why we say 11/11 – we usually commemorate our martyrs. We mark this day as Hezbollah Martyr’s Day. Just for the purpose of reminding, we chose this day to remember all our martyrs because of the momentous event and the great operation that took place on this day in 1982, when the true prince of martyrs Ahmad Qassir (may Alllah have mercy on him) stormed the headquarter of the “Israeli” military governor of Tyre – the commander of the occupation forces of all this region – killing more than 100 “Israeli” officers and soldiers – with the acknowledgement of the enemy itself. Every year, I describe this operation as the biggest operation in the history of Arab-“Israeli” conflict.

For one person, a young man, a martyr to inflict that many casualties on the “Israeli” occupation forces in one operation – killing more than 100 officers and soldiers, including high-ranking generals in the army and the intelligence – as well as psychological defeat makes it unprecedented. We all remember Sharon's blackened and wretched face on that day looking at the HQ. This operation forced the enemy to declare general mourning in its usurper entity.

Also this year, I repeat and say that this operation is the biggest and greatest operation. We hope that one day another mujahid, a self-sacrificing martyr, other self-sacrificing martyrs will carry out an even bigger and greater operation. But for now, the operation of elf-sacrificing martyr and prince of martyrs Ahmad Qassir remains the biggest and the greatest in the history of the Arab-“Israeli” conflict.

We chose this day because of the greatness of the event and the operation as well as its consequences and timing. A few months after the “Israeli” invasion of Lebanon and in the face of all the theories stating that Lebanon entered the “Israeli” era, the message this operation sent was strong, resounding, historic, and great.

We chose this day to commemorate all our martyrs – our martyred leaders and scholars, our martyrs in all the areas, from all the families, men, women – all this diversity. It is the martyrdom anniversary of all these martyrs. It is true that we sometimes host commemorations for some martyred leaders due their particularity. However, we cannot commemorate the martyrdom of each martyr alone because they are too many. That is why we consider this day to be the anniversary of all these martyrs.

On this occasion, the first we salute are the pure souls of those martyrs. We wish them peace and offer them our gratitude. We acknowledge their grace, favor, greatness, and what they did for us. We must acknowledge this. People should acknowledge this. We have to present this to the people and invite them to know this – of course for our sake not theirs – to know the value of the martyrs, their greatness, their sacrifices.

When we talk today about liberations, victories, security, peace, stability, sovereignty, pride, dignity, position of strength – during negotiations and others – strong presence in equations. This is thanks to God Almighty and His graces in the first place. God makes things happen for a reason.

Thanks to those martyrs, first and for most, who have given everything, which is sacrificing their selves. This is the ultimate in generosity. We acknowledge this and thank them for what they did, gave and strived. Therefore, today we are blessed due to their achievements and victories.

Of course, we always highlight these martyrs in our culture, media, and work – their names and their pictures. If you noticed in our media, during the daily news bulletin or after it and in all occasions, the pictures of the martyrs are displayed according to the date of their martyrdom. This is so that people do not forget.

20 years is a long time – from 2000 until today. There are a lot of martyrs leading up to 2000, and people are bound to forget.

We are brothers, comrades, and followers of these martyrs. These martyrs must always remain present in our minds, thoughts, hearts, will, consciousness, our thought, our culture, our literature, and our discourse. Therefore, their pictures, names, experiences and memories must remain. By the way, I told the brothers a while ago that we must revive the old and great names of those who were martyred in 1982, 1983, 1984, 1985, until 2000.

These martyrs were leaders and mujahideen. It is all thanks to them. They were the ones who founded this resistance, its victories, and its achievements. These names are almost forgotten. We must bring them back to memory. And a nation that knows the value of its martyrs, respects them, and shows gratitude towards them is most capable of being loyal to these martyrs and preserving the trust of these martyrs.

I must also pay tribute to the families of the martyrs, to all the fathers, mothers, wives, sons and daughters, sisters, brothers, and all the wives and relatives, who come after the martyrs in their sacrifices, patience, steadfastness, will, and loyalty. They adopted the Zainabi culture that says, “I only saw beautiful things.” They insisted on continuing this path, sending the rest of their loved ones to continue the path of their dear martyrs. The family of the martyrs are also our greatest pride and strength. They provided the resistance with moral and physical support and embraced it despite the difficulties that comes from losing a loved one or the hardships of life. All the love, respect, and salutations to all of them.

The verse that I read at the beginning talked about two groups of believers – some of them who have fulfilled their vows [to the death] and those are the martyrs, and those who await. There is a group that should preserve the achievements of the martyrs, what the martyrs entrusted to us, and their victories. They preserve the above with patience, enduring hardships, and continue the jihad with sincerity and loyalty while they await the moment the they join the martyrs. God Almighty spoke about the two groups – the group that was martyred and created victories with martyrdom and the group that is still fulfilling its pledge to God and with the martyrs, that is preserving victories, and continuing on the path in the hope that it will obtain the same great status as the martyrs.

Today our martyrs are God’s argument to us. They are God's argument to all people in Lebanon and in our region. The quality of our martyrs is diversity – they include martyred Secretary General Sayyed Abbas Al-Mousawi, scholars such as Sheikh Ragheb Harb, jihadi leaders such as Hajj Imad Mughniyeh as well as senior leaders in the jihad work, including those military, security, and organizational cadres, and martyred men, women, and children who embraced this resistance, was patient, and stood with it.

This diversity among the martyrs, their belonging, the different regions and families they came from all testify that this march does not hold back – old or young, male or female, a student or a mujahid, money – be it along the front line or in the rear. This is the quality of this march. The most important trait is loyalty and salvation.

All those who have died, have died on the path of God. And all those who are waiting, still carry these burdens and these responsibilities for the sake of God. As long as that is for the sake of God and in the eyes of God Almighty, He is the guarantor that this blood grow, its results and effects increase, and it bears great fruits in this world and in the hereafter, God willing.

From here, we consider that we must pursue this responsibility and preserve the achievements and victories of these martyrs.

First topic:

From here, I will delve into the first file: the maritime border demarcation. Of course, I have not commented on this topic since it was raised, and I promised on more than one occasion that I would give it priority based on this promise because I consider this one of the achievements and the products of the blood of martyrs and the sacrifices of the resistance. Now, we will talk about this file briefly and completely.

As a reminder, on May 25, 2000, I said very clearly on behalf of the resistance: we in the resistance don't get involved in border demarcation, maritime or land. It is not our duty to define what the land border or the maritime border is and what territory belong to Lebanon that we will fight for and liberate. At the time, we clearly state that this is the responsibility of the state. This comes within the state’s constitutional mechanisms. This comes under the authority of the cabinet, the government, and the parliament.

This is a difference in views. In any case, the Lebanese state, with its constitutional institutions, defines Lebanon’s maritime and land borders, and the resistance adheres to this and views this as its duty, alongside Lebanese Army and the people to defend this border. If there is any remaining Lebanese land or water under occupation, then its responsibility is to help liberate it.

We said this 20 years ago, and we have not changed our position –whether we were part of the government or not, prior to 2005 or after it, when the Syrian were here or when they left Lebanon.

This matter has nothing to do with all the changes that have taken place in the country, and this is still our position. Our position has not changed at all. The reason for this clarification is because I will comment on it. First off, we will talk about what happened with us, and then I’ll make a quick comment.

Indeed, after 2000, and on more than one occasion, the Lebanese state engaged in indirect negotiations. We remember senior officers in the Lebanese army, under the supervision of the army and His Excellency President General Emile Lahoud, negotiated disputed points on the land border. What the experts say is that the land borders are drawn. However, we do not have negotiations to demarcate the land borders. There are clear and drawn borders.

Yes, there are disputes and disagreements with the enemy over some of these points. They negotiated and regained large areas of Lebanese territories that “Israel” wanted to keep under its occupation. The resistance, at the time, didn't intervene – not negatively or positively. Hezbollah didn't say this hill, that valley, or this mountain is ours or not ours. We sat on the side.

It was entirely the Lebanese state’s responsibility. The Lebanese state is the one that said the Shebaa Farms, the Kfarchouba Hills, Ghajar are occupied Lebanese territory.

As a resistance, we did not impose this matter. In any case, there were already negotiations regarding the land borders. Then, the maritime issue arose. In the past, this received great attention in the country. Later, when oil and gas appeared, especially in the southern area, it was necessary to identify sea blocks.

Foreign companies wanted to invest, but they needed legal and security guarantees. This pushed the Lebanese officials to pay attention to the need to demarcate the maritime border.

Before the talk about oil and gas in Lebanon, especially in the southern region, south of the sea bordering the south, there was no vital issue called the demarcation of the maritime border with occupied Palestine. But the presence of oil and gas there and Lebanon’s need for funds are what prompted officials to pay attention.

Of course, I remember ten years ago, this matter was the primary concern of Speaker Nabih Berri, who took the initiative and assumed responsibility, made calls, and negotiated with many considerations. Here, I am talking about Hezbollah – not as a party in the Parliament or government – as a resistance movement in Lebanon. We supported this effort to demarcate Lebanese waters. It was only natural that there be an effort to define these borders so that the Lebanese waters are clear. Consequently, the blocks are clear, and companies can come and invest.

We did not have any problem with this matter. Of course, there are a set of conditions that we have always discussed and agreed upon – it was required that there be indirect and purely technical negotiations. The only topic of negotiations would be the demarcation of borders and nothing else, not an introduction to anything else. That was our only warning.

As for where these maritime borders are and how they are demarcated, we did not interfere and did not impose anything. But if one day this matter was discussed in Parliament and we have ministers and deputies representing us, then we will either give our opinion on it or not. However, as a resistance, we did not come to draw lines. We entrust this task to the officials and the leaders.

Of course, His Excellency Speaker Nabih Berri for many years – ten years ago – have been conducting the negotiation process. The matter was announced. And it appears that there is a special American interest – delegations coming and going.

Starfield came, then his mission ended and could not finish the file. After him came David Hale and Schenker and so on.

Recently the Americans have shown a great deal of interest, regardless of the reasons. I do not want to delve into many analyzes now because we have many topics to talk about tonight. Regardless of the reasons, the Americans wanted to be the mediators. They pushed and encouraged towards a result. At that time, Speaker Nabih Berri created the framework for negotiations. The responsibility was transferred to His Excellency President General Michel Aoun. These negotiations have practically begun, and I believe that there was a session today regarding this topic. I would like to conclude this topic with commenting.

1- As soon as Speaker Nabih Berri announced a framework for negotiation, it became clear that matters were heading toward negotiations over the maritime border. His Excellency President Michel Aoun took over the file. A great atmosphere prevailed in the country. Of course, some political forces, deputies and figures, some media outlets in the region, especially in the Gulf started talking endlessly and commenting.

This coincided with what is happening in the region in terms of normalization with “Israel”, from the UAE to Bahrain to Sudan, etc. Some tried to connect it with the regional normalization agreements. However, we consider that these two are not related. Yet many said that the Amal and Hezbollah's approval of maritime border negotiations would pave the path for peace agreements or normalization with “Israel”.

We do not need to comment on this because all this is nonsense. This topic did not cross our mind or the Amal movement’s. as we said, this topic began ten years ago. There was no normalization or anything of this sort in the region.

All the past efforts revolved around the negotiations being indirectly and purely technical to reach an agreement on the demarcation of the maritime border. Even more ridiculous, some even said that there were secret US-Iranian negotiations, which is absolutely does not exist.

The statement of His Eminence the Leader and other officials all declared that there are no negotiations, publicly or behind closed doors, during Trump’s term. At the very least, this is settled. Now, what they do after Trump leaves office is their business. They will announce. But there is nothing of this sort in the time being. It was said that this is a reflection of the US-Iranian negotiations. They tie everything to the Iranian nuclear file.

There are people who are tools for the West and are unable to comprehend that there are Lebanese political parties that act at the national level and make decisions in the interest of Lebanon.

Others even spoke of secret Hezbollah-“Israel” negotiations as well as negotiations between Iran and the “Israelis”. They named Iranian officials that visited occupied Palestine and “Israeli” officials who went to Tehran. They talked about secret negotiations between President Bashar al-Assad and the “Israelis” and between Hamas and “Israel”. All this comes from a single source and one black room. Its objective is to provide the traitors who are normalizing with “Israel” with a smokescreen and to say that everyone is heading toward normalization, negotiation, and understanding.

Iran is negotiating under the table. Syria, Hezbollah, Hamas, Amal, and everyone are heading toward normalization. All these are just baseless lies, fantasies, and illusions. Hezbollah doesn't need to release a statement denying this.

I hope from the public to consider such a talk as lies, falsehood, and injustice. It is baseless, and we do not need to issue a statement denying this because if we did, then we’d dignifying this type of news and the one who wrote about it.

I told some of the brothers who suggested that we issue a comment or a statement regarding some articles or interviews that talked about this that by doing so we are helping spread the smokescreen, even if we were denying it.

I will limit my comment to this. Our position regarding “Israel” is clear, and we repeat it on all occasions, particularly on Al-Quds Day, and to all our allies and friends — “Israel”, from an ideological perspective, is an illegal, cancerous, demonic entity. This is in the humanitarian, religious, moral, and legal sense – the “Israelis” are a group of gangs that occupied Palestinian territories. This won't change with time.

We will never be part, support, facilitate, or sanction peace or normalization agreements with “Israel”, nothing of this sort. It is, however, fine to engage in indirect technical negotiations to solve border disputes, demarcate the maritime border, secure the release of prisoners, recover remains, and solve the missing persons file since we still have this kind of file pending with the “Israelis”. As for our position regarding peace talks and normalization negotiations with the enemy, it is clear and does not need any further explanation.

2- Regarding the current situation in the maritime border demarcation negotiations, it is under His Excellency President Michel Aoun’s management. I would like to emphasize now, as always, but because I am talking about this issue, we have full confidence in His Excellency’s management of this file. If someone gets confused as a result of a disagreement point, I will return to it shortly.

We know how tough His Excellency the President is, and we know his eagerness on achieving the national interest and obtaining Lebanon’s rights. We have confusion, uncertainty, or problems with this at all.

Basically during the final stage, when Speaker Nabih Berri was negotiating the framework agreement, we as a duo knew that His Excellency President Michel Aoun will take over the management of the negotiations. We had no problem with this issue or any confusion or hesitation about it. Therefore, this issue must be clear and decisive. When we have a disagreement over a detail, people should not see it as a matter of doubt or suspicion. No, people must trust each other. They must have absolute trust in one another, but they might disagree on some details or approaching some details.

In that regard, we disagreed with President Aoun on the composition of negotiating team — we, Hezbollah and the Amal Movement, wanted all Lebanese delegation to be composed of military personnel and the “Israeli” delegation to be likewise. It was just a matter of extreme caution that this negotiation in Naqoura raises any questions or suspicions that might trouble the water.

Of course, His Excellency the President responded to the idea that the delegation should not comprise of politicians because it was proposed to include politicians. But the dispute on whether the technical advisors be civilian personnel or military personnel, and if we could benefit from the civilian technical advisors outside the delegation. We could not reach an understanding regarding this point.

So we issued our statement not to question our confidence in His Excellency but to declare our position regarding a sensitive matter.

And I tell you frankly, it is this statement that protected the negotiating delegation. When it appeared that there was a dispute between us and His Excellency the President, and then the statement was issued, everything that began several weeks ago regarding normalization, negotiations, and so on was refuted.

If we disagreed on a detail related to more caution and precaution in order not to trouble the waters and not to allow suspicions, and we issued a statement and recorded a position on this level, put all this aside.

We confirm our trust in President Aoun and his management of this file. It is clear from all the data now that the Lebanese negotiating delegation is cautiously and accurately abiding by the guidelines and is working, God willing, under the directives of His Excellency the President, to achieve Lebanon’s utmost interest in this area.

What's important for us is that Lebanon regains all of its rights.

Later, when the results are released, they will be presented to the constitutional mechanisms. Then, each political party, everyone in the country that has a comment, a position, an opinion can express it. The Lebanese negotiating delegation and Lebanon should know that they are negotiating from a position of strength and not from a position of weakness.

Just as Lebanon needs to resolve these negotiations to exploit natural resources, so does the “Israeli” enemy. It needs to know that Lebanon possesses real elements of strength. Whoever wants to prevent us from benefiting from our oil and gas knows very well that we can prevent them. This is a point of strength.

I will talk about another point of strength.

Hence, the Lebanese delegation is not in a position of weakness. It is not begging for spaces and distances. It is begging anyone, not the Americans or others. We have rights, and we are strong. We must get our rights from a position of strength, with our dignity, pride, and honor, God willing.

Second topic:

The second file is the latest “Israeli” military drills a few days that were conducted from Sunday to Thursday. Of course, I will not talk in detail about the exercise and its objectives, etc.

This is a lengthy research, but I will only say the following: Of course, the drills were one of the largest “Israeli” exercises. There were similar drills that took place in the north of occupied Palestine and in the Golan region at the same time, which the “Israelis” considered one front.

A similar or a larger manoeuvre took place in 2017. The topic was the same. During the maneuver, there were analyzes, threats, and indications that the “Israelis” might exploit their readiness and the presence of this large number of forces in northern occupied Palestine and in the Golan to carry out some attack either towards Lebanon or Syria.

At the very least, there were analyzes or possibilities of this kind, and the drills received a lot of “Israeli” attention. Meanwhile, there was not much interest int this topic in Lebanon, except for us since we were closely following up on them. The “Israeli” prime minister as well as the war minister attended them. The chief of staff and other officials were always present, and they released endless statements.

Regarding these drills, I would like to quickly comment on several points:

1- What were the main objectives of the drills that they announced? I will not talk about special information. The “Israelis” assume that there are forces from Lebanon’s Islamic Resistance forces that entered “Israeli” positions and settlements in the Galilee. So, one of the maneuver’s main objectives is to regain these positions and settlements. In other words, expelling resistance forces from these places and engage in another reaction along the border area. This is what the drills were about. Of course, there were also air and fire drills. This is one of the achievements of the martyrs.

The main theme of the “Israeli” military drills in 2017 was of defensive nature. The “Israelis” lay down a defensive plan – how to defend their positions and settlements in the Galilee region in the north of occupied Palestine. And in 2020, “Israel” holds a similar maneuver despite the economic situation, the coronavirus pandemic, the difficulties, etc.

What does this prove? This is proof that for the first time the resistance in Lebanon has pushed “Israel” from offense to defence. This is the resistance’s capabilities.

In the past, the “Israelis” used to make fun when someone said that we want to attack and change the equations or threatened that if you enter our lands, we will enter occupied Palestine. If you remember in the past wars, the “Israelis” used to think that they could invade Lebanon with a marching band.

This resistance in Lebanon, the martyrs of this resistance, the mujahideen of this resistance, some of whom died and some of them were waiting, both of whom brought Lebanon to a stage No, the enemy's view has become a different view.

The resistance in Lebanon and its martyrs and mujahidin changed the way “Israel” views Lebanon.

The enemy is wary of attacking Lebanon. When it plans to attack Lebanon, it thinks of destruction, fighter jets, and missiles. It does not think about invading large swathes. Its ambitions on the field are limited. It even opts for defensive thinking. That is why it laid down defensive plans to defend its positions, settlements, and the Galilee area. It reviewed these plans and conducted maneuvers in 2017, and in light of these drills, it made adjustments and insisted on holding exercises in 2020.

This is a very important point – for us to know the value of Lebanon and its resistance as well as Lebanon’s strength in the enemy’s calculations. It never occurred to the “Israelis”. This, of course, allowed us to make correct calculations, when it came to the equation of strength in Lebanon – whether it was negotiations over the maritime border or disputed points along the land border or the deterrence equation (or the protection equation, etc.).

2- The enemy’s insistence on this maneuver as well as the 2020 one. The chief of staff of the “Israeli army insisted on carrying out this exercise even if 1,000 “Israeli” soldiers got infected with COVID-19. This also confirms another fact “Israeli” generals have always talked about after the 2006 war against Lebanon and after the 2014 Gaza war.

They have been saying that the “Israeli” army’s ground forces are suffering from a deep crisis – readiness, officers, soldiers, fighters. There is a moral, psychological, and spiritual crisis – lack of trust in the officers and the leadership, lack of discipline, absence of willingness to sacrifice and move forward. Therefore, with all the drills that the “Israelis” carry out, they provide the soldiers and officers with guarantees that nothing will happen to them and that their progress will be safe.

This is the result of the huge imbalance and emptiness in the psychological and moral side of the “Israeli” army’s ground forces. Thus, it needs these drills to give them confidence in themselves, to restore their morale, to motivate them, to give them guarantees, and to tell them that we are capable, and this is our plan and our maneuver. Of course, this is a real crisis that exists today among the ground force in the “Israeli” army.

We know that after all the “Israeli” naval force has a limited distance. In 2006, one missile took the “Israeli” naval force out of the equation when Sa'ar 5 was bombed, and should there be a war in the future, the “Israeli” naval force will be unable to make any real achievement.

We do not underestimate the “Israeli” Air Force, and we acknowledge that it is one of the most powerful air weapons in the region. The Americans give the “Israelis” without limit. Every development in the air force is provided to them, but this does not constitute a guarantee. This does not protect the Zionist project in the region and does not protect even the usurping entity. All the wars and recent experiences have proven that the air force alone is unable to achieve victory. The July war, the Gaza wars, and all the wars that took place in our region, even the current six-year war in Yemen confirm that the air force alone is not capable of achieving victory or over deciding a battle. The ground forces are essential and decisive in defense, attack, and battles. Today the “Israeli” army seriously suffering with regard to this matter, and this is something we can build upon.

There is one last thing regarding the drills that I want the Lebanese and the people to know. I do not want to cause a state of panic in Lebanon, but I have to talk about it. On Saturday, before the drills started, until the day of the drills i.e. on Friday and Saturday, the Islamic Resistance was in a state of alert.

Some units of the resistance in Lebanon were on a 100% state of alert, others were on a 75% state of alert. At the level of the system and the effectiveness of command and control, all were present within this system. Of course, the “Israelis” knew about this. It was important to us that the “Israelis” know about it because its importance is the following:

We are awake, ready, and alert. Our finger is on the trigger, and if the “Israelis” think of carrying out any foolishness or any aggression, we will retaliate. Our response will be ready, fast, and very soon.

Of course, we did all this quietly for a period of seven or eight days without causing the Lebanese people in the villages, towns, or cities to sense anything or to cause a state of fear or anxiety among them. This is the quality of a studied and calculated popular resistance. It does not show off, but it is honest and serious.

In Syria, according to my information, the maximum precautions were taken by the Syrian leadership, the armed forces, and the allies in Syria. The message sent to the enemy was clear – along the other front, there are people who are present and ready for confrontation. They have not weakened, surrendered, or affected by all the developments taking place in our region.

Third topic:

The third file is the American elections. I am talking quickly in order to finish all the files. I do not want to conduct an analysis regarding the US elections, but rather I want to discuss what is related to us, our peoples, our region, and our axis. The whole world is following the US presidential elections, and this is natural because the results will impact the entire world.

Here I will comment on several points:

1- The course of the US elections, the candidates' speeches, the conflicting and contradictory electoral campaigns, and the media.

I think that more than ever, there have been revelations regarding a group of facts in the United States of America at the level of the political system, at the level of the forces and parties, and at the level of the people. Everyone in the region and in the world must take note because, in the end, the US is a problem – in our opinion – for the entire world, for both its allies and friends and its enemies.

Let us just reflect on the numbers and data presented during the electoral campaign and take lessons to know what America is. There are people who are presenting America to us as the supreme model that we in the Arab and Islamic countries and in the third world countries must imitate.

Let us look at the reality of this supreme model. Let us see it through the reality of its values, traditions, customs, the consequences of its behavior, its practices, its democracy, the reality of its political system, the way its governments deal with the different segments of the people.

All this need to be noted because there are astonishing figures and scenes that were shown on television and on social media, both with regard to the economic and financial conditions and the size of the US treasury debt.

Now, we are talking about debts. Look at how much debt the US has, the living conditions of tens of millions of Americans. Today, the pictures on television of high-end cities show people living in tents (nylon tents) that are scattered to the left and right of their high-end streets. These people bathe in the streets, have no shelter, and have no health insurance.

In any case, there are a large numbers of coronavirus cases, great numbers of people with terminal illness. Biden spoke several days ago about a huge number, of mental and neurological diseases, drug addicts, the crime rate in the American society in its various forms, murder, injury, accidents, shootings, theft, rape, high number of prisoners in prisons, the magnitude of corruption that exists in state administrations and among political leaders, the extreme racism revealed by the events of the past few months, and so on. This is America that they are presenting to us as a source of freedom, democracy, justice, and prosperity.

It is useful that people take note of this. These are not allegations, nor are the enemies of America telling lies about it. All these figures are present in documentaries and documents. The Americans themselves are mentioning these numbers and statistics. They are talking about their reality, concerns, and real internal problems. These priorities can impose themselves on the new administration as well. This is a topic that appeared during the elections.

2- The second point is the exposure of American democracy as a sham. They are calling on the world and the people to emulate. Look at Trump, and it's not Trump alone but rather the entire Republican party is officially adopting Trump's battle to not recognize the election results. What kind of democracy is this?

For example, let me remind you of something. The people who were following or the reporters, even reporters working for satellite channels that are Trump’s friends, said that a category of the American people voted via mail, and others voted early among them Trump. This is the second category. Then, there are people who voted on election day.

So, when they start counting votes, they start the opposite way. This means, they start counting the votes of people who voted on election day, then the votes of the people who voted early, and lastly the mail-in ballots. In any case, most of those who voted by mail are Democrats, those who voted in the early elections are mixed, and the majority of those who voted on elections day are Republicans. As soon as the polls closed, Trump came out shouting, stop counting, stop counting. Why? Because he considered himself the winner. It is normal when you consider polling. But if you take into account the 70 million voters (possibly more) during the early voting as well as the mail-in ballots, of course, the results will change.

He wants to confiscate the votes of tens of millions of Americans and say: I won, and that’s it. He declared himself a winner while not knowing the outcome. He considered what is happening now is fraud. That’s the case with the entire Republican Party, not just a foolish, tense, or emotional person. No! We do not know where Trump and the Republican Party are taking America if they continue their path. So, don't hold Western democracy or American democracy over our heads. They do not respect people’s opinions and voices inside America or abroad.

3- The third point is about what concerns us today regarding the new administration. There is something related to the remaining two months of the Trump administration that I want to talk about on its own. I will also talk about the psychological and the emotional topic later. Whatever the people in the world, the countries, and governments read is their business.

But our main misfortune has been around for a long time and for decades – the American policy in our region is an “Israeli” policy. Meaning, the US wants to guarantee “Israeli” supremacy, permanence, power. This is among the constants in American policies.

Whether they’re Democrats or a Republicans, Bush, Clinton, Obama, Trump, or Biden, they all rush to support “Israel”, embrace it, defend it, protect it, and strengthen it. Thus, for us things will not change. It is possible that their policy towards Russia, China, North Korea, Cuba, Venezuela might change.

But in our region which includes Iran, Iraq, Syria, the Gulf, Yemen, and North Africa – that is the Islamic and Arab region – the Americans have one main thing that is constant. When it comes to the entity usurping occupied Palestine, America’s priority is “Israel” and its supremacy.

Therefore, no one should pin promising hopes as well as fundamental and strategic changes in American policies in the coming stage. Some are saying that there is a possibility that the Biden administration, for example, might reverse the US approval of annexing al-Quds to the Zionist entity, considering it as the enteral capital of “Israel”, as well as moving the US embassy to al-Quds and annexing the Golan. I don’t think this will happen at all. Perhaps there will be differences on the settlements,the West Bank, the two-state solution, but these are details. Yet even in the details, the top priority will remain guaranteeing “Israel’s” supremacy and upper hand. Hence, we are not betting at the news administration, nor are we living in fantasies and illusions.

Of course, when it comes to emotions. I am talking about my personal feelings. There is no doubt that when you look at the Trump administration and the Trump government, you find that it is the worst government. If it is not the worst, then it is one of the worst, one of the worst successive US governments. It is the rudest, ugliest, and most arrogant government towards its friends and allies. It may be less so with its enemies.

Notice the difference in his speeches with Iran and with Saudi Arabia, for example. When he is addressing Iran, there is a kind of observation, attention, precaution. He will leave office bearing grief that there was no Iranian official who spoke with him on the phone. Anyway, Trump’s administration is most arrogant, most superior, and most oppressive, endorsing criminality and terrorism.

In the past four years, Trump put the world on the brink of war – regardless of whether it was a psychological warfare, the edge of the abyss. He was serious. It was almost the brink of war with North Korea, China, Iran, Venezuela, Cuba, Syria. Regarding peoples and countries, he resorted to severe blockades, animosity, open foreign intervention in one’s domestic affairs.

The good thing about Trump and his administration is that they showed the true face of the United States. His predecessors tried to mask this. One good quality Trump has is that he is direct. He list of crimes is long; regarding the Palestinian issue as we said, there is annexing al-Quds and recognizing it as the capital of “Israel”, moving the embassy, annexing the Golan and the Shebaa Farms – with US recognition – oppressing the Palestinian people – the authority, the PLO, and the Palestinian people. Trump failed to break them. Regarding Iran, he imposed the harshest sanctions on the 80 or 85 million people during the coronavirus pandemic. He also threatened it with war.

Syria was also threatened with war, the Caesar Act, and more blockade. He also provided endless support for the Saudi-Emirati war against the oppressed Yemeni people. There was an attempt to revive sedition in Iraq and Lebanon and an attempt to overthrow the government in Venezuela, Cuba, and North Korea. He has committed many crimes. However, if we wanted to give him a broad title, it would be failure. All of Trump’s attempts failed. He failed in breaking the will of the Palestinian people. what happened to the deal of the century? at the beginning of deal of the century, I told you that it rested on three angles:

1- Trump

2- Netanyahu

3- Mohammed bin Salman

God willing, Trump is gone. He is either leaving, or he will take America with him in case he does not accept the results [of the elections]. Netanyahu is in the worst position of his political life despite having Trump by his side. It has even gotten worst. Mohammed bin Salman might be the most worried person today among the region’s rulers should Biden remains committed to his promises during his electoral campaign. He promised to punish Mohammed bin Salman and hold him responsible for the killing [Jamal] Khashoggi and cutting him up with a chainsaw. He also promised to end support for Saudi Arabia’s war on Yemen and stop selling weapons.

If he fulfills his electoral promises, Muhammad bin Salman has the right to be very worried. Hence, there is one angle that is gone. The other two are defeated. Of course, Netanyahu's chances of falling are higher because the political structure in the usurper entity is different from that of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Thus, this deal of the century with its angles will be gone, God willing.

The Palestinian people’s will was not broken despite all the difficulties, siege, torments, and pain. Likewise, Iran’s will was not broken despite all the sanctions, the most severe sanctions, and the difficult conditions during the coronavirus.

Syria’s will was not broken. The Iraqis are trying to overcome sedition that is being sowed on a daily basis. in Lebanon, we were able to defeat sedition. In the final part, I will talk about Lebanon. He failed in Venezuela, Cuba, and North Korea. He also failed to subjugate China. The broad headline most commonly is failure.

Therefore, I will take note of two outcomes from this presentation.

The first: Yes, at the personal level, I am happy to see the humiliating fall of Trump. With regard to his successors, we do not have anything to say about them. They are all alike. But we get to be happy especially after he committed the crime of the age which is assassinating the great commanders Hajj Qassem Soleimani and Hajj Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, in addition to the crimes he committed in Iraq and Iran. he even boasted about them during his electoral campaign. I tuned in to more than one of his speeches where he confirmed committing his insolent crime.

Thus, at the personal level, it is our right, and no one can prevent us from being happy with Trump’s humiliating defeat by his people. It is not us that defeated him but rather his people the same way he tried to humiliate his friends and allies and continue his aggression against the people in the world.

On the practical level, we must know, based on our evaluation of the past four years, the possibility of war under Trump’s aggressive and arrogant administration was higher and will be higher than under the incoming administration.

Under the undisciplined Trump administration when the possibility of war was higher, our people persevered and were able to thwart and prevent the project from succeeding or achieving something. This means that our determination is stronger than their tyranny, blockade, and arrogance. This means that what Trump, his government, or the coming government say is not a predetermined fate and that people of the world, the governments of the world, and the oppressed in the world can stand up to the USA. What will happen if they said no? Eventually, they will emerge victorious. Those who will fight them and attack them will be humiliated and broken. This is also one of the lessons that can be learned from the elections.

The last thing that I would like to talk about regarding the elections is the remaining two months. media outlets are reporting that senior Pentagon officials in the US expressed their fear. The speaker of the House expressed her concerns. US officials in the region expressed fear over what Trump might do in these two months after he fired the US ‘Defense’ Secretary and appointed the acting ‘Defense’ Secretary.

This big question worried the entire world. I do not know what he might do in these coming two months; anything is possible with a person like Trump. It is possible that it is a purely personal vendetta because it is said that ‘Defense’ Secretary Esper refused to do what Trump wanted and that he was preparing to resign. So, Trump had him for breakfast before Esper had him for lunch.

This is an existing possibility. No, it is a serious matter. Regarding serious decisions, some thought that it was related to outside the US. I tell you there are two possibilities: inside the US or abroad.

One of the reasons Secretary of ‘Defense’ Esper was fired is because when the protests erupted in the US, Trump wanted the army to quell the demonstrations. The ‘Defense’ Secretary threatened to resign – as I remember – and refused to use the army. I am sure he refused and threatened to resign. Trump might have considered that one of the reasons he lost the elections is as a result of the internal fallout because Esper did not resolve the situation in the past few months. It is known that domestic reasons are behind Trump losing the elections.

Therefore, he is holding Esper responsible, exacting revenge on him, and punishing him. On the other hand, he may have fired him in order to use the US armed forces inside the United States of America. This is a possibility.

Another possibility is that it might be related to abroad. The Republicans, the far-right, and their ally “Israel” might have been trying to accomplish something in the region but failed to do so in the past four years. So, he thought he might be able to do it in the remaining two months! this is also a possibility.

I can't predict what will happen. Could be nothing, could be something domestic, could be something abroad. All options are possible. What's important is that the resistance axis – countries, governments, leaders, resistance factions, and people – be wary over the next two months. I call on everyone to be aware and watchful in everything we say and do. This is what reason calls for. We should expect the worst even if nothing happened. All of us in the axes of resistance must exercise extreme caution during these two months. May they pass well. We must also be highly prepared to face any danger, aggression, or harm and to respond harshly if the American or the “Israelis” committed anything stupid.

Third topic:

We come to the last file. Please bear with me a little, and God willing, I will not take too long. The US policy in Lebanon and the sanctions.

As I mentioned earlier, US policies in the region evolve around “Israel”, and the same goes for its policy in Lebanon since it is part of the region. the US policies in Lebanon center around “Israel” and its security. Lebanon’s border with occupied Palestine means the entity’s safety. The US is interested in demarcating the maritime border not for Lebanon’s sake but “Israel’s”. It is also concerned with drawing the land borders. But what is of importance to it is “Israel’s” security and superiority, to thwart any danger or threat from Lebanon that poses a danger to this entity. They also have ambitions for the future - normalizing and signing a peace deal with Lebanon the same way they did the Emirates, Bahrain, and Sudan. If this was not their top concern, it is probably their second or third.

So, is America’s problem in Lebanon really about corruption? Corruption has existed for tens of years! The living conditions and economic situation? These are all decades old. Do the Americans have remarks on the Lebanese democratic elections? They have notes not from now!

America’s problem in Lebanon when it is related to “Israel” is the resistance. What are America’s main concerns when US delegations come to Lebanon? The borders, Hezbollah, precision missiles, Hezbollah's weapons, the participation of Hezbollah in the government, the alliances made with Hezbollah, giving Hezbollah cover, the environment rallying around Hezbollah, etc.

Their problem is with Hezbollah. It is not like what some are trying to say – the Iranian influence. No, their main problem is with Hezbollah being a political party. The Americans won’t see it as a big problem when Hezbollah abandons the resistance and just decides to be a political party that is absolutely loyal to Iran. The Americans’ fundamental problem with Hezbollah has to do with the resistance, why? The Americans’ problem is with all the resistance factions. But Hezbollah is the main and largest faction. Their problem is the resistance, which is Lebanon's source of strength. Today, as we said when it negotiates the maritime border demarcation, Lebanon is depending on its strength.

“Israel”, today, cannot impose anything on the Lebanese people. In the past, “Israel” could impose political options, peace deals, security conditions, etc. Today, the “Israeli” enemy feels great anxiety and weariness. Its hands are tied to the rest of the Lebanese territory because there are those who are defending Lebanon and protecting it via the equation that we always talk about – the army, the people, and the resistance.

So, all the US has been doing, at least since 2005 [over the past 15 years at the very least], is how to get rid of Hezbollah. They even tried this via Syria. I remember – let me remind the Lebanese – the negotiations before 2005, in 2005, and after 2005 with President Bashar al-Assad. Two high-ranking Arab officials – who I won't name – went to Damascus in before 2005 carrying a US offer: The Americans tell you that you can have all of Lebanon, your military forces can reach the border and not stop at the Awali River, and you can do whatever you want. But, Mr. Bashar al-Assad, you have to do two things – disarm Hezbollah and disarm the Palestinians in the refugee camps (since this is related to the resettlement issue).

Thus, before 2005, the Americans and some Arab regimes resorted to every means possible to disarm the resistance. I will quickly mention the following and I hope that everyone listens because I will be talking about the Free Patriotic Movement. Sometimes some of our friends in the Free Patriotic Movement bring up the quartet alliance.

I want to remind them that in 2005, after the martyrdom of Prime Minister Rafik Hariri, the work of America and its tools were to strike Lebanon, instigate a civil war and sectarian strife. The goal was the resistance and its weapon. This project, which was not only threatening Hezbollah but rather the whole country through sectarian strife, was thwarted via the quartet alliance.

There was a conspiracy in 2005, but it failed. After 2005, the July 2006 war was aimed to crush the resistance but failed. In 2008, before the security assassinations, including the assassination of commander Hajj Imad Mughniyeh, there was the May 5, conspiracy to pit the resistance against the Lebanese army and the security forces. It was an American and international conspiracy with local tools. However, it was thwarted.

You all remember the so-called Arab Spring in 2011 and what they did in Syria – the takfiris (call them what you want – Islamists, jihadists, patriots, the national opposition). They all agreed that when they are done with Syria, their fight will be with Hezbollah. This project was thwarted. And before that when Prime Minister Saad Hariri was detained in Saudi Arabia. We knew that there was an American project with al-Sabhan and Lebanese leaders to instigate internal fighting in Lebanon and a civil war targeting the resistance and its weapon. This project was also thwarted. So, what do they have left?

I will talk about what they have left in a couple of words. The Americans found that the July war did not work, so did the Syrian war – objectives were to target Hezbollah and, of course, one of its to change the regime in Syria. If it was changed, Syria would be rushing to normalize with the enemy entity, faster than the Emirates, Bahrain, and Sudan.

All attempts, internal war and internal strife, sectarianism and civil war and internal incitement, did not work. For the past two to three years, they have been focusing on pitting the Lebanese people against the resistance and Hezbollah, specifically the Shiite community, because it is the direct environment.

When we talk about the resistance that includes Hezbollah, Amal, and any other faction, we are talking about the main geographical environment, the villages, the cities, and the people living, the resistance, its fighters, its capabilities – this is the Shiite community. How do we incite this environment against the resistance?

Let's exploit the economic situation, the living situation, etc.

Here, they followed two paths. The first path is emphasis on the economic situation in the country, especially from a year ago until now, the dollar game that we talked about, preventing the dollar from coming into Lebanon, preventing the return of deposits, the Lebanese banks, etc. All these are the doing of the Americans. They pressured Lebanon and threatened anyone in the world with sanctions if they thought of investing in Lebanon. The American’s goal was to exacerbate the already difficult living and economic situations. They wanted to bring the Lebanese to a point where the US would say, "you want us to help you? Get rid of the resistance."

The other path they took was blaming the resistance, in general, and Hezbollah, in particular, for the economic crisis, corruption, the collapse of the country by spreading lies, such as the Hezbollah government; Hezbollah is ruling Lebanon; everything is in Hezbollah’s hands; the MPs, the judges, and army officers all belong to Hezbollah. All these are baseless lies. There people who are promoting these lies and believe in them. This will not get us anywhere. They tried hard to incite this environment against the resistance – from October 2019 until now – but they failed.

Some people took to the streets. But even those who protested did not agree on holding Hezbollah responsible for the economic situation. Even when protesters called for economic reforms and some called for the implementation of UN Resolution 1559 and the disarmament of the resistance, how many people took to the streets?

David Hill admitted that billions of dollars have been spent in the past few years. How much was the army given? Two, three, four billion? The army is clear and transparent since it is an official body.

This means they spent six billion dollars on the media. I respect everyone who says I fund the revolution; I bring an olive sandwich from my mother. You are honest, but David Hill said they gave billions of dollars – five, six, seven, eight, count them the way you want.

He said they gave money to non-governmental charities, which we can't trace. The money that is given to the state, when it is stolen, there is hope of finding out who stole it. There are incoming and outgoing receipts. But the money that was given to NGOs, the media, some figures, where is it?

Is it not the right of the demonstrators who took to the street in October and November to wonder? For this reason, I tell all the good people in the country: the greater good is used in the service of evil. do not be deceived by the slogan of truth. Look for the ones leading you. Under who’s leadership are you protesting?  Under who’s leadership are you pelting stones? Under who’s leadership are you endangering yourself? Whose project are you serving, even if you were loyal and honest?

All events proved that the US embassy was running the operation.  Let them explain to us. Where are these NGOs and the billions of dollars that David Hill talked about? Where did they spend the money? What did they spend it on?

Well, this is a failure. The awareness of the Lebanese people in general helped thwart this project. You failed to accuse Hezbollah of corruption and stealing. We repeat and say, whoever has a file on us, on any minister, deputy, head of a municipality, employee, anyone should take it to the judiciary. There is none of that.

The worst they said was we are not fighting corruption in the appropriate way. We’ll discuss this at a later time. There is no time now. You protect the corrupt. We spoke about it previously and discussed it, but we’ll discuss it at a later time. But can anyone accuse us of being corrupt? Hezbollah of being corrupt? Hezbollah plundered money? No one can say that. So, this also failed.

The only path left for the Americans is imposing sanctions on Hezbollah’s friends and allies. We will conclude with this topic.

Bear with us for a few more minutes. Hezbollah has been the target of this path for many years – our leaders, brothers, religious scholars. They did not just put those who work in the security and military fields on the list, they also included those who work in politics, culture, research, history, geography, etc. All are put in the list. Some have to pay five million. Others have to pay seven or ten million. This is good; our financial balance will increase in this way.

The goal is to apply psychological pressure, incitement our supporters in Dahyeh, the south, the Bekaa, and ask people to gather information on our officials in exchange for money. In any case, I will not talk a lot about this point. As for Hezbollah, impose whatever sanctions you want on us. They won’t matter to us. There is a difference I have to admit.

We practically do not have money abroad. We have no visits, travels, or tourism ambitions. We are simple people who have enough to live. We are satisfied with how we live. Conviction is an indestructible treasure. We have faith in the cause we are sacrificing our best brothers, women, family, martyrs for.  We are prepared to sacrifice for our cause. These sanctions won’t do any good. They pressured Iran with more sanctions since its support Hezbollah. They put pressure on Syria. But we are still steadfast.

I am not saying that we or our environment did not get hurt. We got hurt. But we are patient, endure, persist, and carry on. This has also become clear to the Americans. This will not give a result. On the contrary, “perhaps you hate a thing and it is good for you.”

Two years ago, when they started putting us on the list and putting pressure on the banks in Lebanon. They froze the accounts of officials in Hezbollah, their wives, or their children and returned the people’s money back. Some of brothers were upset.

We used to tell them “perhaps you hate a thing and it is good for you.” What happened after that? When the financial crisis erupted, banks were unable to pay the people their money back. Within two years, depositors belonging to Hezbollah who were depositing $ 1,000, $ 5,000, $ 10,000, more or less, withdrew their money.

O brother, they kicked us out of the banks. Now, our money that we withdrew either ended up in our homes or were deposited in places like al-Qard al-Hassan Association. This move that we hated, protected our money. But those people who were happy that they were not included in the sanctions list, their money and deposits are threatened. “Perhaps you hate a thing and it is good for you.”

In any case, this is not us gloating or anything. This is a description of a reality that is happening. So, we have to look at things from a different perspective – not everything bad that befall us will harm us. It might a blessing in disguise. Even in such types of battles and challenges and despite Hezbollah and its environment being sanctioned severely, nothing happened. So, they decided to target our allies.

Today, I will talk about Minister Gebran Bassil, a friend who was included in the sanctions list. Who did this path start with? They started with ministers Ali Hassan Khalil and Youssef Fenianos, the Amal Movement and the Marada Movement. I do not think that they negotiated with them. they were quickly put on the list. This accusation was clear.

At the time, we showed our solidarity with the two dear ministers. We issued a statement as a response. We all remember the statements of the leaderships of the Amal Movement and the Marada. Both movements confirmed their adherence to the resistance and national causes.

The sanctions will not affect their commitment. Of course, this position sends a clear message to the Americans indicating that this path will lead nowhere, especially when it comes to our allies apart from the Free Patriotic Movement.

This brings us to the Free Patriotic Movement. The Americans saw an opportunity. Let us be honest and transparent. Someone told the American that there is a chance. The Amal movement and the Marada Movement will not break, but the FPM will, with all my respect to the FPM, I am just saying what the Americans were told. the reason is maybe the FPM’s situation is different, or the nature of their alliance, history, the past, etc.

We do not want to go into these details. Let them work on this issue. This issue is important, and certainly there was internal Lebanese incitement to personal accounts related to Minister Gebran Bassil and to partisan accounts related to the FPM. The American resorted to this move which is undoubtedly a huge one. We are talking about the head of a movement, not a minister representing the party or a deputy head of the movement. We are talking about the head of the movement directly.

Another thing is that the Americans spoke with him. I am talking only because Minister Bassil spoke about the matter. They spoke with President Aoun and with Minister Bassil and negotiated directly. I am speaking about the subject – what happened between him and them – only because he spoke about it because during such meetings what is spoken, we keep secret. I am serious and really committed to this matter. This is a religious and moral commitment. But since he spoke about it, it is good that I comment on what he said.

They negotiated with him. Minister Bassil told me the Americans have been in contact with him for a while, talking to him. And the threat was clear. He was required to hold a press conference announcing the end of the agreement between Hezbollah and the FPM, end the relationship and not just the understanding. Each part goes on its separate way. They gave him a deadline. When he spoke to me was his first deadline. Then, they extended it for a week. After that, they gave a deadline until a certain date.

If he did not do what he was asked to do, they will put him on the terror list. They accused him of corruption. The goal was to inflict more damage to Minister Basil.

“In any case, they gave me two options. I am here to tell you, Sayyed, and put you in the picture. I am not asking anything from you. This is my position and opinion.”

Minister Bassil then continues, “I can’t go on with this step because this means our freedom, independence, decision, the interest of the country, etc. Hence, I have these two decisions. I am only informing you. I will not accept, and if they want to place me on sanctions list, let them.”

Here, I told him, God bless you. I will say what I told him so that all our allies know. I told him that our relationship is an old and well-established one. From there, a friendship blossomed, and it was not political. We do not want you to be harmed. Whatever position you see fit, we understand dur to these pressures. If you need anything from us, we are ready. If we can help in any way, we are ready.

Minister Bassil said, “No, this is our position. I just wanted to put you in the picture. We do not want anything from you. Regardless of whether we can do anything about this or not, but it is my duty to tell you so if anything happens later on, you and the brothers are in the picture.”

Here, based on this answer, I tell all our friends and allies in Lebanon: If the Americans negotiated with you and pressured you, and gave you two options, you are free. We understand any position you take. We do not want anyone to be harmed, and we do not want anyone to be disturbed. Review your conscience, interests, Lebanon's interests, and act accordingly, and we'll understand. And if we are required to help in anyway, we are ready.

Let’s go back to Minister Bassil. Minister Bassil was officially informed the final position, although I know they tried through mediators and put a lot of pressure on him and also on His Excellency the President in order to change their position. They used the carrot-and-stick approach. But his decision was final. Then came the American decision. Here I have two comments, one related on the Americans and another on Minister Basil.

Regarding the Americans, if we were to discuss with them, for example, why did you put this person and not that person on the list? Why corruption? Why terrorism?

We discussed the principle. Meaning, does the US administration even have any legal right, is it the United Nations? Or the international security council? What is it? Let's talk about international law. What gives a government practicing terrorism, supporting terrorists, creating terrorists, and launching wars the legal or moral right to classify people? It is designating people as terrorists. What legal and moral right do you have?

I forgot to tell you something. Even though Trump’s administration failed at everything, it succeeded in one thing – looting, theft, and milking.

So, when a government that protects and supports the most powerful dictatorial, corrupt regimes that steal the wealth of their people in our region and in the world wants to designate people, I tell them you do not have the right to do so. I am not asking them for proof. The Americans have no right neither to classify terrorism nor to classify corruption because they are the head of terrorism and corruption on this earth.

So, you consider Minister Bassil to be corrupt. But if he broke the alliance with Hezbollah, will he stop being corrupt? You are contradicting yourself. His designation clearly shows that it is political. The Americans are using this method to put political pressure and impose political conditions on parties, entities, and figures. This is what the Americans do in the world, and they are doing it in Lebanon.

We will see in these two months what sanctions they will impose on parties and figures. Hence, our position regarding the Americans is decisive. I hope all the Lebanese will deal with the fact that this is a matter of sovereignty. set aside your partisan differences and consider it a breach of sovereignty.

If the US designates one of our opponents in Lebanon as terrorist or corrupt, I reject this. The US administration has no right to designate any Lebanese as corrupt or a terrorist. It's the role of the Lebanese state and judiciary alone.

If we really care about sovereignty, we must act in this way. We must not be happy, gloat, or laugh when any person, party, or entity is subject to US sanctions in Lebanon. On the contrary, when we, as Lebanese, stand in solidarity with each other and reject it. This will prompt the Americans not to designate the rest and place them on the lists because they will discover it’s useless. It will only further increase hostility with the Lebanese people, the Lebanese parties, and the Lebanese figures.

We applaud Minister Bassil's position and see it as courageous, especially after he explained and clarified. Those who ask Minister Bassil or the FPM to be photocopy of Hezbollah is mistaken. We always say that Hezbollah is different from the FPM. We disagree with each other on issues that may be political or ideological. But we have more agreements, and we work on them. On the points that we disagree, we try to understand each other and distribute roles. This is how friends and allies interact with each other. No one is asking from anyone to be a photocopy of the other.

In his own literature and way, Minister Bassil expressed his position with very great courage. We consider his position to be courageous. It is also patriotic and very important. It can be taken as a model of the Lebanese political behavior. We stood in solidarity with him, and we hope that everyone show solidarity because, as I explained, they are targeting everyone and not just one person.

As Minister Bassil expressed his commitment and sincerity to this relationship, we also express our commitment to this relationship, which Minister Bassil won through his position. He has proven his credibility, his freedom, and his independence. This is the correct approach, and I tole this to him on the phone (the internal line). He believes in this, and he said it to me before I could tell it to him:

These Americans, when they pressure a person with sanctions and ask him to do something, if he gives in to them, he will have no choice but to do more. They found his weakness, and they have him by the throat. No, from the beginning of the road, we are free. We do what is in the best interest of our country which is also our interest. We do not accept anyone to impose or pressure us. This is a very sound political approach. Anyone who wants to be free, independent, and sovereign and preserve his personal dignity, the dignity of his movement, and his national dignity must act this way. He should refuse to submit, and this is what Minister Bassil did.

Hezbollah and the FPM used to sit and discuss. But with the coronavirus, these meetings lessened. We must review this understanding between us since it is 14 years old. It was a primal understanding that did not address all the files. It did not address all the issues that is why we agree or disagree.

In the past 14 years, some people were keen on breaking this alliance and understanding even though we stated that this alliance is not a front directed against anyone. We hope that this understanding expands and includes all the political forces. There is nothing to stop us from engaging in other understandings. Hezbollah and the FPM are free to hold whatever understanding they want. You all know the Maarab understanding.

Our understanding has so far lasted 14 years. There is no doubt that it needs to be revised. There are discussions. There are remarks from our part and remarks from the FPM. Like all friends who are honest with each other, sincere with each other, we discuss and address the problems. We, however, are keen not to say our remarks on the media. The media sometimes rush us. For example, regarding the corruption battle, they ask us what we’ve done.

Now, we are not talking on the media. We do some revisions, and then we reveal the results to the media. Of course, we will review and develop this relationship. And I think that the response to the American sanctions was one way of developing the relationship between the FPM and Hezbollah which had the interest of the country in mind. We are not building a front on the expense of our other friends and allies or even our opponents.

In conclusion, I repeat and say that we as well as our supporters applaud this honorable and respected position. It must be noted. We hope to see more positions similar to that of the Amal Movement and the Marada Movement when ministers Ali Khalil and Youssef Fenianos were put on the sanctions list, as well as other positions of many honorable and free people in the region.

Minister Bassil showed us a bright model in the past few days. We hope that this model be generalized and emulated and for the Americans to understand that they cannot put pressure on us, humiliate us with blockade, or impose choices on our country, people, and political forces – choices the political forces themselves do not believe in.

This issue must be brought to an end if we want to be able to treat the country, rescue it, and avoid the dangers Lebanon’s enemies might want to throw at it.

Of course, discussing the government formation needs more consultation and consensus between the President and the Prime Minister. We hope this issue will be accelerated, and we always emphasize their role together in forming the government. This constitutes a guarantee for all political forces.

Also, regarding the coronavirus and some of the Supreme Defense Council’s decisions or recommendations. We join our voice to their voice. To all the Lebanese people and residents on Lebanese territories, please adhere to the measures to avoid what is worse. The debate regarding a general lockdown or a partial one, this is present in France, Spain, Italy, America, and all over the world. Let us see how we will overcome the difficult stage together.

I’ve taken up a lot of your time more than before. In any case, these are the files and the events. There are even other files that I have postponed.

On Hezbollah Martyr’s Day, we pledged to our great martyrs to preserve what they entrusted us with, protect their achievements, raise the banner of victory, continue on their path, and seek the goals they sought, achieve more victories, and protect our country, sanctities, and our nation. We hope and await that God Almighty bless us with that honorable, sublime, and divine medal that they attained.

Peace and God’s mercy and blessings be upon you.

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