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Hizbullah-PSP Plays the Israel Card

The Hizbullah-backed PSP government in Lebanon has called for 'national unity' to 'confront ongoing Zionist aggression' amidst domestic tensions.
By Gabe Kahn.
First Publish: 7/19/2011, 7:51 PM / Last Update: 7/19/2011, 10:54 PM

Hizbollah and MP Walid Jumblatt’s Progressive Socialist Party (PSP) said Tuesday Lebanon must commit to national unity to face Israel.

The call for unity against Israel comes as the Hizbullah-backed Lebanese government faces harsh criticism and walk-outs from opposition leaders over the Special Tribunal for Lebanon, and Hizbullah's abject refusal to hand over four of its operatives indicted in the slaying of former Prime Minister Rafiq Hariri. 
 
Among the most vocal, and potentially dangerous critics for Jumblatt's government, is Saad Hariri, son of Rafiq Hariri and a former prime minister himself. 
 
Should Lebanon's government fall, or Hizbullah's popularity wane due to calamity, Hariri  is considered by many observers an electoral force to be reckoned with.
 
Jumblatt staged the meeting at the former Israeli detention center in Khiam near the southern border with Israel, in use before the Israeli withdrawal from the security zone in south Lebanon, where representatives discussed the general situation in Lebanon, with special focus on south Lebanon.
 
According to  the PSP website, the meeting discussed how to “confront ongoing Zionist ambitions” and "strengthen relations between Hizbullah and the PSP."
 
Israel and Lebanon are currently disputing undersea gas rights in the eastern Mediterranean, which regional observers believe Hizbullah may use as a pretext to divert attention should it find itself in a political crisis at home.