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Hezbollah Continues Attacks In North Lebanon

From their allies at the Associated Press:

[AP caption: A Druse woman, Yessra Halawi, reacts after her house burned Sunday during clashes between pro-government supporters of Druse leader Walid Jumblatt and Shiite gunmen and their allies in Chouweifat, south of Beirut, Lebanon, Monday May 12, 2008.]

Heavy fighting breaks out in north Lebanon

By BASSEM MROUE, Associated Press Writer

BEIRUT, Lebanon – Heavy fighting broke out Monday between government supporters and opponents in Lebanon’s second-largest city, where the two sides battled with rocket-propelled grenades, heavy machine guns and mortars, security officials and residents said.

Residents said they heard strong explosions reverberating through Tripoli. At least six people were wounded, security officials said.

The fighting had stopped Sunday morning after Lebanese troops deployed between the two sides, then flared again Monday after soldiers pulled back when the situation calmed.

The fresh clashes erupted when pro-government forces thought opponents gathering for a funeral in a nearby neighborhood were preparing a new attack, the security officials said on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to talk to the press.

Near Beirut, paramedics said at least 16 people were killed in fighting Sunday in the mountains overlooking the capital. More than 20 people were wounded, they said, also on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to talk to the press.

The fighting in the town of Chouweifat calmed late Sunday after Druse leader Walid Jumblatt called on his Druse opponents, who are allied with Hezbollah, to mediate a cease-fire and hand over the region to Lebanese troops…

Officials could not immediately provide casualty figures from other mountain towns where fighting also raged a day earlier. But the latest deaths pushed to 54 the number of people killed since violence erupted Wednesday, in the worst internal clashes since the end of the 1975-90 civil war…

A minor clash broke out at dawn between government supporters and Hezbollah-allied pro-Syrian gunmen in the busy Hamra district, security officials said on condition of anonymity, also because they were not authorized to speak to the media. Two cameramen for Al-Jazeera television, who arrived at the scene to cover the shooting, were lightly wounded and briefly hospitalized, the channel said.

Most gunmen have withdrawn from Beirut’s streets, but those from the Hezbollah-allied Syrian Social Nationalist Party remain posted outside the party’s offices in the Hamra and Rawche areas. Hamra is adjacent to the residence of top Sunni pro-government leader Saad Hariri, which is ringed by army commandos…

Major roads in Beirut, including the main airport highway, were still blocked Monday with huge sand barriers. The road closures are part of what the Hezbollah-led opposition has called a “civil disobedience” campaign, which it has vowed to continue until the government reconsiders the two decisions that sparked the violence…

But Hezbollah’s show of force in Beirut served a blow to Washington. The U.S. has long considered Hezbollah a terrorist group and condemned its ties to Syria and Iran. The Bush administration has been a strong supporter of Prime Minister Fuad Saniora’s government and its army for the last three years.

Note how this and most of the articles from the AP (and others) use the “passive voice” in violation of their own style book to give the impression that this fighting has just happened.

Fighting just “breaks out.”

No one actually has caused it — let alone those “freedom fighters” of the Hezbollah.

This article was posted by Steve on Monday, May 12th, 2008. Comments are currently closed.

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