Thursday, June 27, 2013

HRW's office in Beirut

I have argued for over a year now that the Beirut office of Human Rights Watch is a mere arm of the March 14 movement in Lebanon and that its statements now reads (curiously) very much like some of the press releases of the Hariri press office (its director in Beirut, however, denied that he was invited to sit on meetings of March 14 secretariat).  But this report still gets my attention: it deals in bulk with an arm of the Lebanese government that is directly funded, equipped, managed, and armed (extra judicially) by the US and Saudi intelligence services.  Yet, not a word is said about the sponsors.  Not a word.  And the entire report spares the director and the ultimate decision maker of the force, Ashraf Rifi (a man who is part of the entourage of the Hariri family, and has close ties with the Saudi intelligence service, and who sits on the board of  Prince Nayif's University of Security Studies.