What if It Happens in Beirut?

I don’t buy the theory that the attack on Italian journalist Giuliana Sgrena’s car was an “assassination attempt” by the U.S. for the same reason I don’t buy the Syria-killed-Hariri theories: they make no sense. Killing Hariri would have been a truly suicidal bombing for the Assad regime; assassinating not only a journalist but also a government agent from an allied country would have been a totally unnecessary self-inflicted gash for the Bush administration. What’s truly noteworthy and disturbing about the Sgrena incident is that it wasn’t exceptional. Shooting up civilian vehicles is the status quo in occupied Iraq.

But while we’re talking conspiracy theories, ponder this: what if, God forbid, an anti-Syria journalist in Lebanon dies some time in the near future? What if he or she is killed by some Syrian troops who get a little overzealous about crowd control at a demonstration?

If that happens, you can bet your firstborn child that the belligerati will lay a detailed plot on the desk of Bashar al-Assad. It’s a gimme.