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Fisk says Middle East anchored in history -

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(generated from captions) how do you create this instability? Well, by killing people who have criticised Syria, but people who also have been known to be critical of Israel, because then the people who kill them can say, well, maybe it wasn't the Syrians, maybe it was the Israelis - in other words, you muddy the waters of the deaths in order to suggest, well, you we order to suggest, well, you we can't be sure, it's outside forces, we don't know who they are. There's no doubt that, for example, among the very angry, ferocious crowd that gathered within minutes around George Hawi's body - and I was George Hawi's body - and I was there - they believe that it was the work of the Syrian intelligence services, the Syrians of course deny this which you may have to - it may be a denial you have to take with quite denial you have to take with quite a lot of Syrian Damascus salt on the tongue. But either way you can be sure we will not find out who did sure we will not find out who did it in the near future. As usual the security forces, there's a very big security force ab rat tus here in Lebanon, were at the scene picking over the bits of the car. One isn't quite sure where the evidence will go. You know, we know that after Rafiq Rafiq Hariri's assassination on 14 February, evidence was taken from the scene of the crime and later other evidence was plantsed there. We also know now that the We also know now that the journalist who was murdered earlier this month, that the car, his car was moved that the car, his car was moved from the scene of the crime and the detonator was lost. It has numbers and codings on T I will be interested to see how good the investigation is into Hawi's murder today. Jumblat put it succinctly. today. Jumblat put it succinctly. He says the life of anyone who wants peace in Lebanon is in danger. He said until the security apparatus said until the security apparatus is controlled by democratic government, there can be no real change. Yeah, the real problem you see for the opposition is that the the opposition is that the President of Lebanon, who obtain add three-year extra period in power from pro Syrian parliamentarians last year, is a pro Syrian. He is a

friend. President of of Syria, he effectively is seen as Syria's man in Lebanon. There doesn't seem to in Lebanon. There doesn't seem to be a legal way of actually getting him out of office and one of the problems is that his security apparatus remains very much under his and there are Syrian influence. As we speak, the UN international commission inquiring into Hariri's murder is actually interviewing as we speak brigadier general mu. we speak brigadier general mu., stafa Ham Dan, a close security stafa Ham Dan, a close security aide to President Lahoud. In a sense to President Lahoud. In a sense both Syria's friends are under great pressure, from the international community, from the UN or by extension the United States and France, and at the same time pressures are coming upon those people opposed to Syria in a very violent and tragic way. Last time violent and tragic way. Last time we spoke to you was immediately after the assassination of Rafiq Hariri and you raised the spectre of a potential civil war beginning again in Lebanon. Just how painful do you think this transition to democracy in Lebanon is going to be? Well, I think there are going to be more assassinations, and I haven't met a Lebanese who doesn't think so. But Lebanese who doesn't think so. But I don't think there will be a civil war. I think that every day that goes by since Hariri's asass assassination in which there has assassination in which there has not been violence is another good day, further proof that there won't be. further proof that there won't be. I was only 400m from the convoy when it was blown up. When I saw that explosion, all the dead of the explosion, all the dead of the civil war started climbing out of their grave's for me. But I think now that, you know, so many families sent their children abroad during the war to be educated, to America, to Australia, to Britain, to Switzerland, and they've come back and I don't think they've come back imbued with this sense of sectarian violence that existed for their families that remained here. One of the reasons we've had so many demonstrations in Lebanon is that they're young people who are

demonstrating saying, we refuse to have another war. That probably is the saving of Lebanon. Alright. the saving of Lebanon. Alright. That brings us - that's optimistic note in a way brings us to the extraordinary statements by the US Secretary of State in Cairo yesterday when she declared that 60 years of US foreign policy in the Middle East had been a complete failure. How do you rate her failure. How do you rate her chances of turning that failure around by instituting or pushing for instituting or pushing for democracy throughout the Middle East? I don't think there's going to be democracy in the Middle East and I don't really think we want democracy. One of the problems of democracy in the Middle East is that if it really exists the Arabs may not do what we want them to do and it's much more easy to have dictator, generals, businessmen running countries on businessmen running countries on our behalf, rather than saying, let's have a fair vote, because in many cases, we may find Islamist governments take over, which we don't want. Originally the don't want. Originally the Americans didn't actually want elections in Iraq. It was only later, when the Shi'ites of Iraq threatened to join the insurrection with the Sunnis that suddenly America became a proponent of democracy in Iraq. I don't think the West wants real democracy out here because it may not turn out to be the kind of democracy we want. We are much happier with shadow military governments as in Algeria. We governments as in Algeria. We didn't object when the Algerian object when the Algerian authorities closed down the second round of elections when they thought that Islamists might take power. And Islamists might take power. And it's constantly the refrain of the Baath Party in Syria that if real democracy came to the Middle East democracy came to the Middle East it would be Islamists who would take over and we don't want that. We saw what happened in Iran, with all the flaws inherent in it, there are flaws inherent in it, there are real elections there. You have to take some of what's being said here at face value. I mean, she's saying that the US, in the past, pursued stability ... Are you sure? I'm asking you whether you can. The US pursued stability at the expense of democracy, but now things are going to be different. She claims the

to be different. She claims the fear of free choices can no longer justify the denial of liberty. Now, she seems to be opening up the possibility there that the US would support Islamist governments. Well, she does, but look, if you live in the Middle East, it doesn't look like this. The Arab world, which is principally what we're talking about, would love some of the shiny beautiful democracy which we possess and enjoy. They would love some of it. They would like some freedom. But many of them some freedom. But many of them would like freedom from us, from our armies, from our influence. And that's the problem, you see. What Arabs want is justice as much as democracy. They want freedom from us, in many cases. And they're not gonna get that, they will not get gonna get that, they will not get it in Uzbekistan, which is not apparently in the little circle of democracy which Condoleezza Rice is talking about. I'd like to believe that what the Americans say is true, but living here, I don't believe it is. What do you think the Egyptian President made of those statements, though, made at his very doorstep, when he faces the potential of an Islamic party coming up to Islamic party coming up to challenge him? Well, the Muslim Brotherhood remains banned in Egypt. Mubarak remains banned in Egypt. Mubarak has been told many times before "We really want democracy in Egypt. really want democracy in Egypt." He said we have democracy, we will said we have democracy, we will have more democracy. That's great and after a year or two we for get the speeches and things carry on as speeches and things carry on as they were. Mrs Bush when she was in were. Mrs Bush when she was in Egypt said it was a push in the right direction when Mubarak decided direction when Mubarak decided there could be contenders for the presidency, it wouldn't be just him standing for the election next time. What she didn't say and what Egyptians know is that the Egyptian governing party has to decide whether those presidential contenders are allowed to stand or not. So it's not a democracy, it's another sham. All the Arabs deserve real democracy, they deserve real democracy, they deserve freedom and freedom from us, but we're not offering that to them. We continue to support the dictators and we to support the dictators and we will to do. How do you know, though,

to do. How do you know, though, that a new breed, just as in Lebanon, you're talking about these young people coming back from many years in the West, and changing the way things are done in a country. How things are done in a country. How do you know that a new breed of young Democrats might not take root and even take heart from these kind of statements in Egypt and in fact right through the Middle East? Look, it's nice and it will be lovely to contemplate that this was the case and I would personally the case and I would personally like to see that. I'd love to see democracies all over the Middle East. But the fact of the matter is that we have - we are anchored into history, the Ottoman empire, the British and French mands dates that followed the First World War and we have created these patriarchal societies in which our kind of democracy, one man, one vote or one woman, one vote or whatever you woman, one vote or whatever you like to say, simply, largely, cannot to say, simply, largely, cannot take root. We have created in Lebanon, for example - there was democracy here by the way before the war. We didn't invent this now. But we've created in Lebanon, for example, a totally sectarian society. You cannot be the President of Lebanon unless you're a Christian Maronite. You cannot be the Prime Minister unless you're a Sunni Muslim. But unless you're a Sunni Muslim. But we don't mention this . We talk about democracy. But this is not a modern state. Lebanon, like all the states state. Lebanon, like all the statess in the Middle East, is artificial. It was created by us and it It was created by us and it is a tribal state as it Iraq as we now know, as know, as is require Syria, governed by a Shi'ite sect where the by a Shi'ite sect where the majority are Sunni. We are not setting up are Sunni. We are not setting up the framework for democracy here. What we are doing is we continue to support the largest tribes, while claiming that we want human rights and more proportional representation. What you've got in Lebanon, for example, is proportional sectarianism, which is what if you look at the electoral lists of the last four weeks, is what has been created. It's a free vote, but you have to vote for your tribe. Alright. We're nearly out of time, but can't you unmake history?

I mean, you talk about not setting up the framework ... Ah, look, you cannot escape from history. Why can't you set up those frame works for democracy to take place? It doesn't work like that. Look, history - I will be very brief. I know you're running out of time. History for us is easy to cut off from. End of the Second World War, European Union, you say what you like. The Palestinian in the like. The Palestinian in the refugee camps which are scarcely 2.5 miles from where I'm speaking, they still look back and say the Balfa declaration which was Britain's support for a Jewish poem land in Palestine is what drove them into exile. They lived that declaration last night, one hour before. You cannot ask the Arabs to separate themselves from history because themselves from history because they live it today. Okay. We're living history just talking to you, I think. Thanks very much once again. We'll see you as soon as we We'll see you as soon as we possibly can. (Laughs) The Catholic Church leader who helped topple two corrupt Philippine presidents has died, aged 76. Cardinal Jaime Sin had led the Philippines' 65 million Catholics for more than three decades and is best remembered for inspiring the people power revolution that overthrew the regime of President Ferdinand Marcos. He died in Manila early this morning after a long illness. South East Asia correspondent Peter Lloyd reports. They're mourning the man known to friend and foe as the politician priest, a divine commander in chief. First to pay her respects, the First to pay her respects, the woman Cardinal Jaime Sin helped rise to power after the overflow of President Marcos in 1986. He was a good man, and I shall always remember him with a lot of remember him with a lot of gratitude and I hope we can be a little like him, serving God, serving our country and serving our people. And this from the country's And this from the country's current leader. Let us mourn his passing. leader. Let us mourn his passing. He was the one who fought for the freedom of the Filipino people, and