Shaykh Al Aseer and the transition from the sectarian cold war to the hot war

There is a threat of a sectarian hot war in Lebanon that puts an end to the long simmering sectarian cold war that started with the assassination of PM Rafiq Hariri..

As of today-the sectarian war, if it were to break out, it would be the result of using force against the al- Aseer and his supporters.

If the Hezbollah attacks al Aseer- there is no doubt that the Hezbollah will win-easily. However, it will not be another May 17 operation. Far from it. Lebanon will be firmly on the path of being another post 2003 Iraq.

There will be sectarian attacks, suicide bombings etc.- Iraq style.

Let's hope not. Not because there are many "mixed marriages" but because sectarian wars, civil wars, are medieval in their brutality and viciousness.

There is also the real threat that the Lebanese armed forces and the Lebanese police face significant desertions from Sunni Lebanese who will again see Hezbollah using its military power against their co-religionists while the army and the police are watching in what appears to be tacit acceptance- like what happened on May 7th.

It is well known that in the aftermath of the May 7 onslaught a large number of Sunni officers submitted their resignation from the army. All but one of them withdrew it. They withdrew their resignation for 2 reasons. 1. The Future Movement did not want war nor did it support their resignation. 2. There was a political compromise/deal being worked on and Saad al Hariri said he is a lover/builder and not a fighter.

That is not going to be the case with a violent move against al Aseer.

Worst of all if al Aseer is killed- his successor will not be of the same nature as al Aseer.

Al Aseer has avoided sectarian incitement and called, ad nauseum, for co-existence. His successor will abandon that policy since it would, from the group's viewpoint, have proven unworkable.

The Al Aseer message has resonance in the Sunni community in Lebanon, Syria and the rest of the Arab and Muslim world as one can easily discern from his Youtube channels and Facebook page. His death would provide the movement with the high- profile martyr it needs and help further mobilize and recruit the disgruntled Lebanese Sunnis who have been sitting on the fence unhappy that Rafiq al Hariri and Wesam al Hassan were killed and Saad al Hariri is afraid to come back to Lebanon.

Just like Ghaddafi's criminal kidnapping and killing of Imam Sayed Musa Sadr helped strengthen the Lebanese Amal Movement, as the movement leaders themselves admitted to Augustus Norton in Amal and the Shi'a, the killing of Al Aseer will make the Al Aseer movement bigger,stronger and more militant.

Are the Lebanese ready for the showdown and its aftermath?


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