Former Lebanese MP Fares Souaid said in a November 3, 2023 interview that aired on MTV (Lebanon) that the speech delivered by Hizbullah Secretary-General Hassan Nasrallah earlier that day was like a "Pontius Pilate version of Nasrallah." He said that in the speech Nasrallah "has washed his hands of what is happening in Gaza and of October 7" because he is concerned first and foremost about the U.S. Navy forces deployed in the region. Souaid said that Nasrallah was certain to clarify that Iran does not want to join the war. He said that Nasrallah does not care about Lebanon and that he only cares about Iran and its interests. Souaid emphasized that Nasrallah does not speak for the Arabs and Arab interests, but rather as the leader of an Iranian faction. The interview was aired on MTV, but it was not posted on any of the channel's social media platforms. Fares Souaid shared the interview on his personal Facebook account.
Fares Souaid: "[Nasrallah] demonstrated verbal solidarity of the highest degree with Gaza, while offering the minimal degree of solidarity on the ground with Gaza. He talked a lot about solidarity with Gaza, while doing very little in solidarity with Gaza. The reason is that he was talking as if he [represents], first and foremost, Iran.
"Tonight, we listened to the Pontius Pilate version of Nasrallah. He has washed his hands of what is happening in Gaza and of October 7. His number-one concern was to tell the United States and the world that Iran – and Hizbullah – had nothing to do with what happened on October 7. The reason for this is the deployment of the U.S. Navy forces and the Western fleets. Hence, he was indicating tonight that Iran did not want to join the war, unless it is dragged into it by the U.S.
"He does not care about Lebanon. For him, it is always Iran first. He does not seek any Lebanese interest and has nothing to say to the Lebanese. It is as if he was set free of all the internal [Lebanese] pressure, the Lebanese Republic is almost dissolved, and there is no united political coalition that would counterbalance him. Therefore, he is comfortable wit the domestic Lebanese scene, having nullified the existence of the Lebanese state. Perhaps tonight's speech was in Arabic, but the text was Iranian.
"The most important goal of his entire speech was to exonerate Iran of everything that is happening. He was not talking in the name of the Arabs, like he did in 2006, or even in the name of the Lebanese people. He was speaking only as [the leader of] an Iranian faction, who wants to exonerate Iran from [responsibility] for this war."