BEIRUT, LEBANON (5:00 P.M.) – The former Israeli agent and officer of the Israel-backed South Lebanese Army (SLA), Amer Elias Fakhoury, allegedly admitted his forces’ defeat at the hands of the Islamic and leftist resistance during the years following the 1989 Taif Agrement, Al-Diyar reported.
The former military commander of the notorious Khiyam Prison allegedly told the Lebanese authorities that he worked directly with Israel and acquired Israeli nationality after the SLA’s defeat in 2000.
During the interrogation by the Lebanese authorities, Fakhoury revealed the role of the Lebanese national resistance in fighting Israel during the 1980s and the military operations that targeted the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) and the South Lebanon Army at the time.
According to Fakhoury, the assassination attempt of SLA commander Antoine Lahad, which was carried out by Souha Bechara of the Lebanese Communist Party, had a significant role in accelerating the withdrawal of the Israeli military from Lebanon.
“I was very shocked and realized that Israel would withdraw from Lebanon after the communist resistance operation,” Al-Diyar quoted Fakhoury.
“Antoine Lahad was no longer able to speak as before the assassination attempt,” Fakhoury reported.
Fakhoury allegedly pointed out that the assassination attempt caused great shock in the Israeli circles, which tried to tame the situation through new resolutions and tried to find a strong military officer to take over the command of the SLA by wooing some Lebanese officers, but they ultimately failed.
The SLA officer said the assassination attempt on Lahad revealed that the Lebanese Communist Party was deeply embedded in the SLA, leaving many in the group to mistrust their own members.
“Because of the strikes of the Lebanese and Islamic resistance, the South Lebanese army started to collapse,” he continued.
“With the escalation of strikes and assassinations against officers, the Israeli army sought to move away from the forefront and only fortified its military positions, unlike the South Lebanese Army, which was at the forefront and receiving strikes. The resistance had developed a lot, especially as it was conducting military operations and they would disappear quickly without success in catching them,” Fakhoury added.
The Lebanese military courts are currently investigating Fakhoury and discussing his nearly 20-year-long case, which began shortly after the collapse of the SLA.
He was sentenced to 20 years in prison after the SLA’s defeat; however, he had fled to Israel at that time and eventually settled in the United States.