Lebanese Shi'ite militiamen with rockets and machine guns launched an overnight attack on Thursday (31 July) on the Iraqi embassy in west Beirut.
GV PAN Progressive Sovialist militia in bush area in Chouf Mountains, South East of Beirut, Lebanon, preparing for rock-face descent attaching ropes to belts and tying rope to tree (3 shots)
GV Militia trainees beginning descent of rock-face
GV PULL OUT TO LS Of militiaman halfway down rockface
GV Of militia training in unarmed combat (3 shots)
GV Militia in groups listening to instructions from officers.
GV & CU Of officer showing soldiers how to assemble AK 47 guns
CU Rocket propelled grenade being loaded int launcher
CU AND PULL BACK TO GV Of instructor talking to militia in front of blackboard
SV PULL BACK TO GV militia seated on ground listening
GV of militia running in formation carrying rifles
GV Commandos being shown how to camouflage and blacken their faces (2 shots)
LS of Commando appearing out of bush in camouflage
GVs of militiamen running in their camouflage
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Background: Lebanese Shi'ite militiamen with rockets and machine guns launched an overnight attack on Thursday (31 July) on the Iraqi embassy in west Beirut. Their onslaught was reported to have damaged to floors but caused no casualties. Heavy fighting continued until down. Violence has been mounting in the embattled country since Falangist forces crushed the rightist militia of the National Liberal Party (NLP) earlier this month.
SYNOPSIS: The armed forces of the various political factions in the Lebanon have been undergoing intensive military training to oppose the Falangist regime. Men of the Progressive Socialist militia were seen training on Monday (28 July) in the Chouf Mountains, south east of Beirut. These exercises took place after the country's Falangist military chiefs announced plans to regroup rightist forces into a single powerful militia.
A week of assassinations, simmering feuds and bitter fighting has appeared to have dashed all hopes of forming government of national unity in the Lebanon. Veteran Moslem politician Takieddine Solh, the new Prime Minister, has been trying to form a government of paramilitary chiefs and political leaders. The idea was to bring representatives of the country's hostile and heavily armed factions into the government. It was hoped this would end five years of sectarian government in the war-shattered country.
A week that started with a marked mood of optimism in Lebanese political circles ended in bloodshed at the weekend when fighting broke out in the historic city of Baalbeck. It started during a funeral procession for Riad Taba, assassinated head of the Lebanese Press Association. Ten people were killed and more than fifteen injured in the battle between supporters of the Moslem Shi'ite movement AMAL and pro-Iraqi Baathists.
As these troops prepare to repel any attack in their sector of the country, President Sarkis is facing a major reversal in his attempts to form what he calls a cabinet of activists. It now looks as though Mr. Sohl will have to try to form a cabinet of parliamentarians and technocrats, similar to that of the last Prime Minister Selim Al-Hoss.