The United States this week, for the first time, put sanctions on two former Lebanese officials in a bid to “target those who oppress and exploit the people of Lebanon.” What’s notable is the two sanctioned individuals – former Transportation Minister Youssef Fenianos and former Finance Minister Ali Hassan Khalil – are not members of Iran-backed Hezbollah, but rather members of two parties – one Christian and one Shia – that were formally allied with Hezbollah in government.

“Corruption has run rampant in Lebanon, and Hezbollah has exploited the political system to spread its malign influence,” says Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin. (CONTINUED - 214 WORDS)