Hizbullah’s rising influence in the affairs of Lebanon has left many politicians and intellectuals worried. A leading politician Mustapha Allouch has said that Hizbullah had “hijacked Lebanon” and the “authority to make decisions regarding war and peace” in the region. According to Allouch, the Lebanese people suffer from Stockholm syndrome since they are sympathizing with and defending Hizbullah. He said Iran and Hizbullah call the shots rather than the Lebanese government and military, according to a report in MEMRI website.
In an interview, Allouch said, “Hizbullah has not only appropriated the [authority to make] decisions about war and peace in Lebanon. It has appropriated the [authority to make] decisions about war and peace anywhere between Iran and the Mediterranean Sea – in Syria, in Iraq, and, of course, in Yemen.”
Hezbollah, a terror outfit, has emerged into a major political and military force in Lebanon. Over the years, it has built up a formidable organisation leveraging on its military prowess and political power. It got tremendous grassroots support in the Lebanese society. It also built up educational and social institutions that run parallel to the Lebanese state.
The Hezbollah-led coalition won 57 seats of the total 128 seats in Parliament since the 2009 elections. After Lebanon elected Hezbollah ally Michel Aoun to the presidency in October 2016, the coalition bagged 17 of 30 cabinet positions.
“The question now is: Where does this all lead? A person who was kidnapped should not be asked for his opinion about his kidnapper. There is no doubt that we are a state that has been hijacked by Hizbullah. What is happening to us is a consequence of this hijacking. The hijacked country is acknowledging [Hizbullah’s] right to hijack it. It even defends this hijacking. I believe that us Lebanese people are all suffering from Stockholm syndrome. We have become sympathetic towards our kidnappers. We all know that the Lebanese state and military are not calling the shots here. Decisions begin in Iran and end in Dahieh, Beirut,” said Allouch.