"28/09/2009 Lebanese daily As-Safir revealed on Monday that the United States was working to establish an American airbase in Lebanon and transform the country into a field for the US schemes and strategic military plans in the Middle East.
The Lebanese daily said that the Americans were doing their base to establish such military airbase in the country for "suspicious" reasons. As-Safir noted that the airbase would be located in the region of Hamat, in the northern Batroun.
The daily went on to emphasize that the US officials do not have a favorable opinion of the official airport, Beirut International Airport, due to its location at the Airport road, where Hezbollah is believed to be dominating. The status of the Lebanese military and security institutions is another reason for the American complaint, the daily added.
As-Safir, meanwhile, quoted a well-informed source as saying that a Lebanese air force officer submitted a written request to the Lebanese Army Command in which he called for establishing an airbase in Hamat and for restoring the Qoleiat airfield.......
The idea of the airport in Hamat goes back to the late Bachir Gemayel when he was a leader of the Lebanese Forces, when he felt "under siege" and the crossings between areas were closed......"