- Press Release -

Media & Public Relation Office

Washington, DC July 19, 2006


The American Lebanese Coalition's Position on the Arab American Institute's Summit


Lebanese-American organizations members of the American Lebanese Coalition and number of other Lebanese-American Organizations do not intend to cosponsor, as invited by the Arab American Institute (AAI), the Summit of the 19th of July and most importantly we recommend that no American official or member of Congress accepts their invitation. These are some of the reasons: 

  • The AAI record of siding with the United States antagonists in the Middle East and its adoption and somehow promotion of radical and extremist views, disqualify it from objectively conducting any Summit concerning the current events in the Region. Well meaning American politicians could be easily dragged into adopting what would appear to be generic positions which could be twisted by the AAI into an encouraging image of official dissent and utilized against the policies of the United States and its allies in the region. 

  • The AAI claims to represent most Arab Americans. This is a false pretense because the majority of Arab Americans, starting with their largest contingent of Lebanese Americans, are in total agreement with the majority of their countries of origin that have condemned the ignition of the latest violence and blamed openly Hezbollah and Hamas for leading the region into a disastrous crisis.  The AAI has, if not directly approved, never criticized the policies of the dictatorships of Syria and Iran or Hamas and Hezbollah thus opposing the will and convictions of the majority of the Arab world. 

  • The AAI did not put a clear agenda for this Summit and did not define its purpose. Is it to put blame on Hezbollah for the latest flare up of destruction in Lebanon or to repeat the rhetoric of the extremists? Will it exploit the blood of the innocent Lebanese and their tragic humanitarian conditions as an emotional smoke screen in order to launch their usual blanket accusations implying that all participants accuse only Israel and the United States for the calamities befalling on Lebanon?

The majority of the Arabs have chosen the road to peace. The fights in Palestine, Lebanon and Iraq are meant to blow up all the bridges of this road and to plunge the region into instability.  This presents chances of survival for the Syrian regime and offers the Iranian Mullahs opportunities to spread their Islamic republicís aspirations.   Regretfully the sectarian fragility of Lebanon has allowed Hezbollah to drag the country into the conflict which resulted in an uneven and unwanted war with Israel.  Any Summit to solve this crisis should concentrate on strengthening the Lebanese government and forcing Iran and Syria to stop arming and financing Hezbollah.   If the AAI can adopt these goals we will be the first on their side.  Till then we consider them as serving solely the interests of the enemies of the United States and the enemies of the Arab world.

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