A few months ago, Lebanon arrested Amer Fakhoury, a former senior officer in the South Lebanese Army, the Israeli-backed force that served as a bulwark against terrorist groups based in that country from 1979 until 2000. Fakhoury was arrested at the behest of Hizballah, which had hoped to exchange him for one of its financiers who is currently in U.S. custody. Thanks to pressure from the Trump administration, and the threat of sanctions from the Senate, Fakhoury was released two weeks ago—without any reciprocation by Washington. Yoni Ben Menachem explains why this matters:
Lebanon’s Release of Amer Fakhoury Is a Small Victory for the U.S.
The Sinister Attacks on Israeli Offers of Aid to Lebanon
“The only encouraging thing” about the deadly explosion in Beirut, wrote the former Swedish prime minister Carl Bildt on Twitter, “is that even Israel has been quick in offering humanitarian aid.” Had Bildt been better informed, he might have known that there is nothing new or unusual about the Jewish state offering humanitarian assistance to its Arab neighbors—or to more far-flung nations. Yet his bizarre comment was less hostile than the reactions of those who rushed to dismiss the offer as a meaningless public-relations stunt. Lahav Harkov writes: