Subhi al-Tufayli

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Subhi al-Tufayli
صبحي الطفيلي
Subhi al-Tufayli.jpg
Secretary-General of Hezbollah
In office
1989–1991
Preceded byPosition established
Succeeded byAbbas al-Musawi
Personal details
Born1948 (age 74–75)
Brital, Lebanon

Subhi al-Tufayli (Arabic: صبحي الطفيلي) (born 1948) was the first Secretary-General or leader of Hezbollah for a year. Al-Tufayli is a Shia Islamist, but is a very vocal critic of Iran and the current Hezbollah leadership. He has been an active member of the Lebanese movement Amal Movement, and maintains his support of the organization.

Early life and education[edit]

Al-Tufayli spent nine years studying theology in the city of Najaf, Iraq, during the Saddam Hussein era, where he met other Islamist clerics, and he was influenced by Lebanese cleric Musa al-Sadr.[1] Returning to Lebanon, al-Tufayli joined with Abbas al-Musawi to help found the Shiite Islamic group of Hezbollah in the Beqaa Valley in 1982. Beqaa is one of Hezbollah's three main regions of support in Lebanon.[2]

In Hezbollah[edit]

Al-Tufayli was the first Secretary-General of Hezbollah from 1989 until 1991.

Post-Hezbollah[edit]

In 1984, al-Tufayli was replaced by Abbas al-Musawi as head of Hezbollah. Hezbollah's hostage-taking campaign had wound down since the "Kuwait 17" bombers of the 1983 Kuwait bombings who were linked to leading Hezbollah members were now free, and the Taif Agreement had essentially ended the Civil War in Lebanon.[3] Some say, al-Tufayli also opposed Hezbollah's participation in Lebanese national elections[4][5] and its "moderation" toward the Lebanese state.[6] He also disagreed with Hizbollah’s support of the Government crack down on drug cultivation.[7] al-Tufayli himself however stated that the internal split in Hezbollah was caused by Iran's take over of Hezbollah from the original Lebanese leadership, and Iran's opposition to tactics under his leadership of violence against Israel and a demand to the end of the state of Israel; al Tufayli stated explicitly that Iran wanted to use Hezbollah as a "border guard" for Israel.[8]

Al-Tufayli also promoted the cause against the corruption in South Lebanon, Beirut and the whole state, as Musa al-Sadr did, in his Movement of the 1970s. On 4 July 1997 he organised a protest demonstration in Baalbeck. Despite being banned and the army being deployed in attempt to prevent people attending an estimated 10,000 people took part in the demonstration. The protest received support from Zahle and Dany Chamoun.[9][10] Al-Tufayli said it is "completely unacceptable that a human being could be humiliated because of poverty or because they were in need."[11] In the autumn he organised demonstrations in sixty villages around Brital and Nabi Chit protesting neglect of rural areas and competition from imported crops. Roads were blocked with burning tyres and dumped farm produce. Around 3,000 troops were deployed and 23 protesters arrested. One of the triggers of the protest was the increase of school fees for the new academic year to $300 per child. At the time the average annual per capita income in the Beqaa valley was less than $500. Al-Tufayli advocated refusing to pay taxes and stopping repayment of UNDP soft loans.[12]

In January 1998 al-Tufayli and MP Khadr Tulays were expelled from Hizbollah. A week later, 30 January, al-Tufayli and a group of armed men took over a school in Baalbek where Hizbollah officials were meeting. There followed a two hour shootout with the Lebanese Army which left two soldiers and three of al-Tufayli’s followers, including MP Tulays, dead. There were fifty civilian casualties including a woman killed. Al-Tufayli and around thirty gunmen succeeded in escaping to his home village, Brital. Subsequently his office in Beirut and radio station, “The Voice of the Resistance”, were closed down but al-Tufayli himself was not detained.[13]

He created a breakaway group from Hizbollah with a more populist anti-corruption tone.[14]

In February 2013, al-Tufayli berated Hezbollah for fighting on behalf of the Syrian government in the Syrian civil war. He said "Hezbollah should not be defending the criminal regime that kills its own people and that has never fired a shot in defense of the Palestinians". al-Tufayli added: "those Hezbollah fighters who are killing children and terrorizing people and destroying houses in Syria will go to hell".[15] He also berated the Lebanese Army for not stopping Lebanese citizens crossing the border to fight in Syria.[16]

He also claim that ISIS is created by Iranian and Syrian Government with help of Russia.[17]

Views[edit]

More recently, al-Tufayli has stated that Hassan Nasrallah is implementing the agenda of the Supreme Leader of the Islamic Republic of Iran, Ali Khamenei,[18] that the Islamic Republic's doctrine of "Rule of the Jurisprudent" (Wilayat al-Faqih) is un-Islamic and its government tyrannical.[19] al-Tufayli claims that Hezbollah today is acting as border guards for Israel and mercenaries for Iran and the West.[20]

See also[edit]

References and notes[edit]

  1. ^ Alagha, Joseph Elie (2006). The Shifts in Hizbullah's Ideology: Religious Ideology, Political Ideology and Political Program. ISBN 9789053569108.
  2. ^ Ranstorp, Magnus, Hizb'allah in Lebanon : The Politics of the Western Hostage Crisis, New York, St. Martins Press, (1997), p.46
  3. ^ Ranstorp, Magnus, Hizb'allah in Lebanon, 1997, p.105
  4. ^ The break with Hezbollah and Hassan Nasrallah
  5. ^ Lebanese army hunts down radical cleric
  6. ^ Hezbollah: Between Tehran and Damascus Archived 13 October 2007 at the Wayback Machine
  7. ^ Middle East International No 562, 7 November 1997; Publishers Lord Mayhew, Dennis Walters MP; Giles Trendle p.16
  8. ^ Archived at Ghostarchive and the Wayback Machine: "Iran Alliance with US-Israel- YouTube2". YouTube.
  9. ^ Middle East International No 554, 11 July 1997; Giles Trendle p.9
  10. ^ News from Beirut July 7 1997
  11. ^ News from Beirut July 7 1997
  12. ^ Middle East International No 562, 7 November 1997; Giles Trendle p.16
  13. ^ Middle East International, No 568, 13 February 1998; Reinoud Leenders p.12 Daily Star reported Tulays killed while attempting to negotiate ceasefire
  14. ^ Hizballah Rising: The Political Battle for the Loyalty of the Shi'a of Lebanon MERIA Archived 8 November 2006 at the Wayback Machine March 2005
  15. ^ "Hezbollah fighters dying in Syria will go to hell, Tufaili". Ya Libnan, 26 February 2013. Retrieved 26 February 2013.
  16. ^ "Hezbollah fighters killed in Syria will ‘go to hell,’ says former leader". Al Arabiya, 26 February 2013. Retrieved 26 February 2013.
  17. ^ "FMR. Hizbullah Leader Tufayli Criticizes Intervention in Syria: The Shiites Must Reach Understanding with All Sunnis "Without Exception," Confront West, Russia".
  18. ^ Former Hizbullah Secretary-General Subhi Al-Tufeili: Nasrallah Implements Khamenei's Policy in Lebanon 28 January 2007
  19. ^ Former Hizbullah Secretary-General Subhi Al-Tufeili: 'The Worst Dictatorships Do Not Do What Is Being Done Today in Tehran'; The Rule of the Jurisprudent Is a 'Heretical Doctrine'. (from an interview with former Hizbullah secretary-general Subhi Al-Tufeili, which aired on Murr TV on January 30, 2012)
  20. ^ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ERqE2XiVFy8 "True Face of Hezbollah" video

External links[edit]

Party political offices
Preceded by
Position established
Secretary-General of Hezbollah
1989–1991
Succeeded by