We are up for a tough ride

By Mezzo

We should no longer spend time arguing whether Lahoud has the right to refrain from opening an extraordinary session for the parliament or not. Lahoud, and people alike, never lose sight of their own big picture. He can easily link actions to consequences and can sense ahead of time the ones that can alter momentarily or irreversibly the course of politics.

What is a “big picture”? A “big picture” is either a final goal with a positive annotation, or a development with consequences to fear. In the first case, a movement is built around an ideology (Hezbollah) or around a political goal (Tayyar Aoun, Al Mustakbal, Lebanese Forces, etc…). In the second case, a coalition is built where the others (Aoun with the 8th of March, Lahoud with Hezbollah) would not have too much in common but surely the same adversary (the 14th of March coalition). This is what happened when political formations teamed up against the Syrian presence known as the 14th of March coalition. And luckily for us it managed to bond around the slogan of “Lebanon First” to gain world support.

So since every politician has his own “big picture”, we (the people) need to reconcile political talks and actions to check for consistency. In other terms we firstly need to figure out whether a speech (or an action) is linked to a goal or to a fear.

When Lahoud refuses to open an exceptional session for the parliament, does he want to preserve the constitution and protect the Lebanese people from a civil war? Or is he afraid that a parliamentary session would lift the sit-in and bring an end to the 8th of March street initiative?

A similar example of a different nature is when Nasrallah looked outraged by what was happening on Tuesday and Thursday and started blaming the Siniora(s) for igniting it while Siniora himself was at the Paris III donors conference. Does Nasrallah care for the economical survival of Lebanon or does he fear that the money and the worldwide support to Sinora’s government would make his “big picture” more difficult to achieve?

Here are a few possible “big picture” of some of these politicians (as I see it):

1) Lahoud: He is implicated in the assassination of Hariri so he fears the tribunal. Lahoud has no constructive motivating drive since he is not heading a political movement and has no political dimension outside the presidency.

2) Bachar Al Assad: He wants to bring back his control over Lebanon under a more subtle form, and he is implicated in the assassination of Hariri so he fears the tribunal.

3) Nasrallah: He can no longer have an Islamic Lebanon so he wants his own land to govern the Islamic way. Ta’ef is his obstacle as well as the ones who defend it. He seems to be implicated in some assassinations so he fears the tribunal too.

4) Aoun: He sees himself as the representative of the Christians in a Christian federal state that Nasrallah would have helped create. He also sees himself representing the interests of the Christians in the federal Lebanon as president, side by side with a Shi’a chief of parliament and a Sunni prime minister (one third each). Aoun has no fears and will do whatever he can to achieve his “big picture” at any price.

Let us assume for an instant that the 14th of March coalition does not exist, how would it be possible for all of these politicians to each get what they want (i.e. all of the above), given the contradictions and variety of their demands? Hence why we are up for a tough ride.

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6 Comments

Filed under Aoun, Bashar Assad, Emile Lahoud, Hezbollah, Lebanon, March 14, March 8

6 responses to “We are up for a tough ride

  1. Ramzi M

    Though I do not agree with everything here, I really like the way you approach it, especially in the introduction and the center of the text.

  2. Christine

    Very good post Mezzo. I agree with your opinion.

  3. ghassan

    Lahoud does not and can not open an extraordinary session for the parliament. It is the duty of Berri who is acting like a militia man instead of the head of the parliament! or not. Other than that small mistake, good analysis!

  4. ana

    Ghassan,

    The president is allowed to call for an extraordinary session of Parliament. This is one of his constitutional prerogatives as seen in Article 33 of the Constitution (see below).

    Article 33 [Extraordinary Sessions]

    The ordinary sessions begin and end automatically on the dates fixed in Article 32. The President of the Republic in consultation with the Prime Minister may summon the Chamber to extraordinary sessions by a Decree specifying the dates of the opening and closing of the extraordinary sessions as well as the agenda. The President of the Republic is required to convoke the Chamber if an absolute majority of the total membership so requests.

  5. Nasrallah: He can no longer have an Islamic Lebanon so he wants his own land to govern the Islamic way.

    Is it that simple? Then why is it reported that Hezbollah is buying land outside their usual area? I googled one of the places mentioned and it was a bare hilltop near a Christian town. Not a good place to settle, but a fine place to build a fortification and lord over a subject population.

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