Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Assassination in Beirut

By Micah Halpern
I've Been Thinking:

Last week Hassan al Lakkis was assassinated in his car in Beirut, Lebanon. He had just pulled up to his house and was still in the car when the assassin jumped out and shot him 5 times.

Lakkis was the Hezbollah tech guru. He masterminded the Hezbollah hi-tech drone system and many of their gadgets and gimmicks. Some friends and colleagues teased him and called him "Q" after the techie in the Bond movies.

It is also a commonly held belief that Lakkis has been the mastermind behind the smuggling of weapons from Lebanon into Gaza and into Egypt. He was very close with the leader of Hezbollah, Hassan Nasrallah.
So who assassinated Hassan al Lakkis? Nasrallah and Hezbollah immediately blamed Israel.

But in an unprecedented response, Israel denied responsibility. The Israelis do not normally respond in these situations, they prefer to leave everyone guessing. Two groups, however, have claimed responsibility. The Free Sunni Brigades of Baalabek and the Soldiers of Damascus have both claimed that they killed Lakkis.

The style of the assassination and the response of Israel leads one to believe that responsibility really does lie with a local group.

There is no shortage of Hezbollah enemies in Beirut. Most importantly, the assassination was loud and public and very untidy.

The assassins did not have a very sophisticated exit strategy. They simply shot Lakkis many times and then sped off in a car. 

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