Posted by Joshua on Sunday, January 16th, 2011
Saad Hariri, in a 2007 recording in English, describes the atmosphere and events leading up to his father’s assassination and right after. He describes the Syrian threats that many Lebanese officials close to Hariri described following the assassination; Jamil al-Sayyid who was in the pocket of the Syrians; Bashar al-Assad, who Hariri claims “said one thing and did another;” how Rafiq al-Hariri paid off Rustum Ghazali and other Syrians and Newspaper owners who blackmailed him. He explains that his father trusted Hassan Nasrallah, the leader of Hizbullah, and believed he was someone he could make deals with and do business with. He has a particular animus against Asef Shawkat, the head of Syrian intelligence at the time and brother-in-law of Assad, who he explains bragged to Pakistani ISI about how he had tortured people. Mustapha Tlass, the ex-Syrian defense minister, warned Hariri about Shawkat and said, “may God save Syria from this man.” Clearly relations were terrible between Rafiq Hariri and the Syrians, as well as between Hariri and the Lebanese opposition. There is a lot of hearsay and little that we didn’t already know, although the overall picture is depressing.
See www.Trella.org for an Arabic transcription of the recording.