Ambition Frustrated, Sanctuary Preserved
PLO reactions to the latest Syrian deployment were swift. Fateh called for a total Syrian withdrawal from Lebanon and held Damascus responsible for any bloodshed that might ensue, and urged the League of Arab States to convene an emergency meeting of Arab foreign ministers. The Palestinian Left, LNM, and some Lebanese politicians such as defeated presidential candidate Edde described the Syrian intervention as ‘military occupation’ and vowed to resist it ‘with all means’. LNM leader junblat saw an Arab-Israeli plot to partition Lebanon into ‘sectarian statelets’, hinting at an alliance between the dominant Alawi community of Syria, the Lebanese Maronites, and the Jewish state. Seeking an anti-Syrian alliance, he and Fateh security officer Salama met the LF deputy-commander, Bashir Jmayyil, in secret on 2 June, 1975, and was later joined by Khalaf to meet president-elect Sarkis, but was unable to come to a satisfactory agreement with either.
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