Home > Middle East, Politics > Difficult Dealings with Hezbollah

Difficult Dealings with Hezbollah

Charles Levinson writes in Conflict Blotter:

My experience with Hezbollah this week has left an unpleasant taste in my mouth. I had heard this from other journalist friends who have recently returned from Lebanon, but discovered it for myself this week: their interaction with the press borders on fascist. In southern Lebanon it is very difficult to find people of any confession who speak freely about the organization. Even mentioning Hezbollah by name in interviews seems often to make whoever you’re talking with a touch edgy and uncomfortable. By the end of the week, my Italian colleague was comparing trying to cover the Shiite organization to trying to cover the mafia in her home country.

Hezbollah says journalists need their approval to work in the Dahiyya, the south, or anywhere else Hezbollah has unilaterally declared sovereignty over. My photographer was shooting pictures in downtown Beirut, near the tent city the opposition set up last November, and was pulled aside by a Hezbollah security guard and told he needed Hezbollah permission.

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Categories: Middle East, Politics
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