Tony Parkinson of The Age argues that if Syria is serious about demonstrating a commitment to fighting terror, it could establish itself by handing over one of the world’s most wanted terrorists, Hajj Imad, better known as Imad Mughniyeh (pictured):
Nobody has stalked the region in these past 30 years quite like Hajj Imad. Back in the days when Osama bin Laden was a dorky teenager in flares, Mughniyeh had already made aircraft hijackings, and mass murder, a career speciality. Another of his specialities is providing terrorist fronts for the intelligence agencies of Syria and Iran….
These days, Mughniyeh runs what is tantamount to Jihad Central, co-ordinating the military activities of Hezbollah, IJ and Hamas. It is not surprising he should be suspected for overseeing the violence in Beirut and Tel Aviv. If we take Syria at its word that these crimes were not directly of its doing, who else would be equipped, for example, to plant a 350-kilogram bomb in Beirut under the nose of Syrian authorities? There are very few networks, outside state-run military and intelligence services, with the capability and expertise.
But as today’s Washington Post points out, Bashar Assad just continues to paint himself into a corner.