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I Don’t Care! - ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive
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“Arab countries, Arab world, Arab governments and Arab nations – if you don’t want to lend your support, don’t, but Iran does and it does so well. Ahmadinejad is coming to us and he doesn’t care [about you],” said Hezbollah Chief Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah recently. He added that he is proud of being a part of the Iranian resistance axis and feels that he has been let down by the Arabs; in fact Nasrallah feels that they have plotted against him.

Hassan Nasrallah did not confirm anything new to us – that is those of us who use our eyes and ears and can see what is going on – and it is as clear as the sun in the sky that the Khomeinist party in Lebanon is part of the Iranian project. Furthermore, this is a source of great pride and honour for Hassan Nasrallah, which is something that can be sensed in his speech. At the same time, this is a reason for Sayyed Hassan and those of his ilk, to [simultaneously] complain about and express sympathy towards those Arabs who fail to pay tribute to the pure and noble Khomeini-Khamenei honour.

What was also interesting about the recent speech by the leader of the divine [Hezbollah] party in the south was a funny and spontaneous comment that he made, which is indicative of the kind of discourse suppressed by Nasrallah. Such suppressed comments usually surface in an uncontrollable manner, by way of a slip of the tongue as a result of raw emotion or anger, in the same manner that dreams, for those who specialize in interpreting them, can be used to view the unconscious.

This “slip” of the tongue was uttered in a moment of rage by Nasrallah when he said, “Ahmadinejad is coming, and he does not care [about you].”

This phrase indicates that Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah, the man who militarized and armed his sect and gave it a sense of responsibility and mission, is fully conscious that by necessity, his movement contravenes the logic of the state, and that by turning the issue [of his group’s possession] of weapons into a non-negotiable matter, his movement [has come to] represent a state within state; a state with its own vision, army, doctrine and discourse which is not only different from that of the state but is in fact contradictory to it. As a result of this, Nasrallah does not tire of filling his speeches with references to national civil discourse. He defended himself and his group against accusations that they respect a culture of death more than they respect the culture of life. Nasrallah said that the ashes of the dead are just as dear [to him] as the lives of the living, and that this is something worse fighting for, with the “powerful” Israeli enemy, even if this results in the country being continually admitted into the intensive care unit.

However, Hassan Nasrallah is following the same reckless path as Ahmadinejad, and the shocking comparison of the fate of Lebanon with the remains of a dead body now seem fateful as Nasrallah, like Ahmadinejad, is a man who “doesn’t care.”

In this reckless manner, Hassan Nasrallah wants everybody to follow in the footsteps of the deluded president who is inspired by the awaited Mahdi and supported by the divine halo in the UN hall, with everybody following the policy of “now caring.”

[Nasrallah believes that] the Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh should also follow this policy; he should let the Houthis expand and establish their own state in Yemen, in the same manner as the Hezbollah state. We are not discussing the Houthi crisis or those responsible for it or the fate of the residents of Sa’dah, or the government’s mistakes; rather this discussion is about the negation of Hassan Nasrallah’s logic and goals. Therefore, whoever the president of Yemen may be, it is his duty to impose public security, enforce the state’s authority and prevent the establishment of armed statelets within the country; this is his national duty otherwise he is a traitor. But things are different for Hassan Nasrallah, and [instead] he calls for the Yemeni president to “take the initiative and order a ceasefire, to spare the blood of members of the same families and the same nation, and embark on a peaceful solution instead.” Nasrallah then stressed that he was speaking because he feels “a sense of responsibility, I don’t know the situation on the ground and who has the advantage now, the Houthis or the Yemeni army.”

How can we interpret these words practically? We cannot. There is no interpretation other than Hassan Nasrallah telling the Yemeni government the same thing that it has been told by Muqtada al Sadr in Iraq, and others in Iran and Iraq, which is that they [the government] must end the confrontation with the Houthis. However perhaps the logic behind the statements made by Jalaluddin al Saghir or the Sadrist wing [with regards to the Yemeni government making peace with the Houthis] were clearer than Hassan Nasrallah’s manoeuvres and statements.

If Hassan Nasrallah is so concerned about the security of Yemen as an Arab or Muslim state (he can choose whatever title he likes), why does he not show the same concern with regards to the crisis of Kurdish Iranians or “Shia” Arabs who complain about oppression and the ongoing war being waged against them by the Iranian authorities?

Hasn’t the Iranian government been fighting against them for decades, whilst the Yemeni government has only been fighting against the Houthis for a matter of months?

Why isn’t Hassan Nasrallah enthusiastic about supporting the Darfur crisis or the heated secessionist crisis in south Sudan?

Isn’t Sudan [also] an Arab Muslim country, and doesn’t its regime belong to the same “rejectionist” camp that Hassan Nasrallah has talked so much about?

Doesn’t charity begin at home? Why is he so enthusiastic to get involved in the Houthi crisis?

The principle of “not caring” is what Hassan Nasrallah and those who follow in his footsteps – not to mention those who celebrate him on satellite channels – want to make sacred in order to prevent it being debated or criticized by the Arab elites.

Let us forget about the considerations of the state, logic, the balance of profit and loss, and the state’s national interests for the time being, even if these do not match the demands of the radicals. If there are political decision makers or senior economists who do “care” about their countries being subject to military adventures and premature revolutions, [and rather] look towards stability, which is the first and most important foundation for the development and reform which many continue to demand, then how is it that such desires can take place under leaders who “don’t care” and who may ride the Ahmadinejad wave today and embrace Hassan Nasrallah, and other militia leaders, tomorrow?

What if we look at the implications of the praise that Hassan Nasrallah lavished upon Ahmadinejad?

This reveals a hidden vulnerability in this praise, as Nasrallah wants to convince us that Ahmadinejad looks down on the US, the international community and the entire world and that “he doesn’t care”. But in the same manner as a spurned lover, he [Ahmadinejad] has decided to take revenge by destroying everything in defiance of the person that abandoned and betrayed them. Here we are faced with a contradictory image whereby in the presence of the beloved there is “care” and attachment, and concern, however after the beloved has left or is not present anymore, that is when “he doesn’t care.”

Perhaps [we can see this] by keeping an eye on Iran’s flirting during its nuclear negotiations or its jealousy of whoever enjoys ties with the West – or, like Syria, is in the process of establishing ties with the West. Therefore by monitoring Iran’s behaviour in general this may reveal a concealed passion that has transformed into hostility and hatred. There is nothing more violent or savage than a love that is seeking revenge. America is thus having its attention drawn to the hurt lover that it spurned.

Finally, as Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah, in his own words, is part of the Iranian axis, and also Lebanese, and since Fayrouz represents the soul of Lebanon, there is no harm in reminding the “Lebanese” Hassan Nasrallah of one of her songs which describes the meeting and separation of lovers, and the anger that a spurned lover feels towards their treacherous and deceitful love. In fact this song also contains the idea of “not caring” but in a different manner than Ahmadinejad’s “not caring”.

“If you want to pass me by, pass, if you don’t, don’t,

I don’t care, I don’t care,

If you love me, love me, if you don’t, don’t,

I don’t care, I don’t care.”

Mshari Al-Zaydi

Mshari Al-Zaydi

Mshari Al-Zaydi is a Saudi journalist and expert on Islamic movements and Islamic fundamentalism, as well as on Saudi affairs. He is Asharq Al-Awsat’s opinion page editor. Mr. Zaydi has worked for the local Saudi press, and has been a guest on numerous news and current affairs programs as an expert on Islamic extremism.

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