“We will withdraw as soon as possible, without delay and probably a long time before the election” said the Syrian Ambassador to the US, Imad Mustapha.
He said they will pullout in a phased way so they don’t leave chaos behind. That’s what most countries of the world have been calling for…except George Bush – he said its not enough, they must leave overnight regardless of the chaos that’s left behind. Because of course freedom is more important than peace.
The announcement came one day after a pro-Syrian march in Beirut became the largest demonstration since Hariri’s death.
It was organised by Shia’a groups who have largely stayed on the fence in the recent political wrangling. Despite George Bush’s calls to ‘stand by the Lebanese as they call for freedom from Syria’, he seems to have missed the point that Lebanon’s majority group support Syrian involvement.
Walid Jumblatt, Lebanon’s opposition leader and heir apparent, hailed the pullback to the Bekka as a ‘positive start’ and called for friendly ties with Syria after the troops leave. Lebanon and Syria have economic, cultural and historic ties which will remain long after the soldiers cross back through the Masna’a crossing.