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Hezbollah: Identity and Goals


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“Hezbollah is an Islamic struggle movement. Its emergence is based on an ideological, social, political and economical mixture in a special Lebanese, Arab and Islamic context.

As a result of this background Hezbollah went through various decisive moments in its history. With the most important moment being in 1982 the year of the Zionist invasion of Lebanon. This invasion led to the occupation of the capital Beirut making it the second Arab capital to be occupied during the Arab-‘Israeli’ conflict, with Jerusalem being the first. This crossroad speeded up the presence of Hezbollah as a struggle movement that is totally affiliated in the long complicated and complex fight against the Zionist enemy. The starting point of that struggle being the Zionist occupation of Palestine, and then to many of the Arab lands in Egypt, Syria and Jordan leading up to Lebanon. All that led to the establishment of the identity of Hezbollah as a struggle movement against the Zionists. Add to that many social, economical, political and cultural ideals of the Shiaa in Lebanon. Another very important factor that developed Hezbollah was the establishment of the Islamic Revolution in Iran that was led by the late Imam Khomeini. This revolution consolidated new concepts in the field of Islamic thought mainly the concept of Willayat Al-Faqih. The revolution also generalized Islamic expressions against the west such as arrogance, the great Satan, hypocrites and the oppressed.

With this crossroad and with the historic tie between the Shiaas in Lebanon and in Iran, which is a doctrinal tie. As well as of the reason that Iran hosts the second most important religious school of the Shiaa in Qom with the second being the Al-Najaf school in Iraq. But because of many obvious reasons Qom has occupied the number one Shiaa school in the world today.

Due to that it was only normal for the ideological doctrine in Iran to take root in Lebanon. This tie was very quickly translated on the ground by direct support from the Islamic Republic of Iran through its revolutionary guards and then to Hezbollah that was resisting the ‘Israeli’ occupation.

This religious and ideological tie between Hezbollah and Iran following the revolution with its stance towards the Zionist entity had a great effect on releasing vital material and moral support to Hezbollah. This support speeded up the acknowledgement of making Hezbollah one of the leading struggle movements against the Zionists. But during and after 1985 Hezbollah was the only such movement in this field.

It was not by cheer coincidence that Hezbollah turned into a struggle movement against the ‘Israeli’ occupation. Because Hezbollah’s ideological ideals sees no legitimacy for the existence of ‘Israel’ a matter that elevates the contradictions to the level of existence. And the conflict becomes one of legitimacy that is based on religious ideals. The seed of resistance is also deep in the ideological beliefs of Hezbollah, a belief that found its way for expression against the Zionist occupation of Lebanon. And that is why we also find the slogan of the liberation of Jerusalem rooted deeply in the ideals of Hezbollah. Another of its ideals is the establishment of the an Islamic Government.

The Islamic Resistance was able to direct very painful blows to the Zionist enemy forcing them to withdraw step by step. One of the principal withdrawals is that of 1985 leading up to the withdrawal from the Christian area Jezzine. And finally leaving the enemy with no choice but to withdraw completely as a final solution to their problems.

Hezbollah also used one of its own special types of resistance against the Zionist enemy that is the suicide attacks. These attacks dealt great losses to the enemy on all thinkable levels such as militarily and mentally. The attacks also raised the moral across the whole Islamic nation.

It is also vital to state here, that the resistance gained high credibility amongst the people and in all official statuses, both locally and internationally. The US also once stated that the resistance is a justified movement in facing the ‘Israeli’ occupation.

The resistance also established an internal national axis in a way that was never witnessed in Lebanon before. This matter is of vital interest when we notice how Lebanon is divided into various religions, sects, ideologies, societies, cultures etc.

Today, Hezbollah is one of the most prominent Lebanese political parties that has its presence in the parliament with 8 MPs.

Hezbollah today also commands respect politically after it proved its strength with its presence by respecting the values of others in the field.

Hezbollah also sees itself committed in introducing the true picture of Islam, the Islam that is logical. Committed to introduce the civilized Islam to humanity.

Hezbollah also sees itself committed in introducing the Islam that is confidant in achieving justice, as well as introducing the Islam that protects all human rights. Introducing the Islam that supports education, the Islam that offers medical support. Hezbollah also has its own cultural plan to attract and convince through civilized and humanitarian means as specified in the human rights laws, far from any use of violence or coercion.

It should also be clear that the kind of Islam that Hezbollah seeks is a civilized one that refuses any kind of oppression, degradation, subjugation and colonization. Hezbollah also stretches its arm of friendship to all on the basis of mutual self-respect.

The Islamic path that Hezbollah follows is one of a message that aims to establish peace and justice to all humanity whatever their race or religion. Hezbollah does not have a problem with anyone, but it feels responsible towards him or her to clarify the true Islam far away of any fanaticism.

Hezbollah does not wish to implement Islam forcibly but in a peaceful and political manner, that gives the chance to the majority to either accept or refuse. If Islam becomes the choice of the majority only then will it be implemented. If not it will then continue to co-exist with others on the basis of mutual understanding using peaceful methods to reach peaceful solutions. And that is how the case should be to the non-Islamists as well.”

Source: Hezbollah Central Press Office (accessed online May 25, 2004