Category Archives: Camille Khoury

Initial reactions on Aoun’s latest mistakes

By Ana

General Michel Aoun slammed March 14 saying they don’t have a right to be decision makers. He also said that he represents the majority of the Christians and being shut out of the debate for the presidency is isolating the voice of the majority of the Christians. He also criticized the U.S.’s recent statement rejecting a president that is affiliated to a terrorist organization or foreign power.

1. March 14 is the majority and therefore is the decision maker by constitutional default;
2. The FPM and their leader need to re-check the Metn results: the only substantial Christian bloc that voted for Camille Khoury was Tashnag, and certainly not the Maronites (although I fully respect and advocate the view that the Maronites are not all the Christians); and
3. How can you, Aoun, support a president that has the carte blanche from Hezbollah (like yourself) when they are clearly a terrorist organization, one that you acknowledged back in 2002?
4. Lastly, Aoun equates the Shi’as with Hezbollah. How wrong he is. The Shi’as are more than just the political Shi’as of March 8.

The problem with demagogues is that they can never be consistent. It makes the fact that they have no logic too obvious.

For French readers, I highly recommend you read Carlos Edde: Le Fascisme. The article was published in L’Orient Le Jour last week. Fascism in a new light. Note to readers: Read between the lines, it’s a lot more fun.

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Filed under Aoun, Camille Khoury, Free Patriotic Movement, Hezbollah, Lebanese Christians, Lebanese Shi'a, Lebanon, March 14, March 8, Tashnag

So should Khoury win, Aoun will get all the credit

By Ana

It is incredible watching voters heading for the polls today. I have to say that my fellow blogger, Mezzo, completely hit the bull’s eye in predicting how voter behavior would play out today, when he said:

“This thought, however, came to my mind after seeing Aoun everywhere; leading every appearance, on every TV debate, at every reunion, and in every newspaper. Basically, everywhere and barely any trace of Camille Khoury, the real candidate against Amin Gemayel.”

Basically, Aoun successfully managed to turn Khoury into a proxy candidate. As one person commented on my previous post, Aoun cannot contest Gemayel himself given that he already is in Parliament (though he certainly doesn’t act like it).

However, this is far from a good thing. If Aoun claims to be leading a political party, then he needs to develop an infrastructure and sturdy fundamentals that have a longer life cycle than himself. This, he has miserably failed in doing. What this points out is the extent to which the party resembles that of a personality cult, except with an actual legal status. Once again, the Lebanese are succumbed to primitive politics and feudal representations. Unfortunately, it can only be said that the FPM’s supporters not only brought it upon themselves to stagnate any political maturity in the Lebanese national system, but have also brought it upon the rest of the population by guaranteeing at least one other generation of pre-modern party structure. Rather than advocating something more aligned with liberal democratic models, the party opted to encourage the status quo.

The end result, funny enough, is that Aoun is literally multiplying himself in the party.

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Filed under Amin Gemayel, Aoun, Camille Khoury, Lebanon

Aoun can’t manage a political party

By Mezzo

Until recently, I never asked myself whether Aoun’s Free Patriotic Movement (FPM) could be turned into a political party that could survive him. This thought, however, came to my mind after seeing Aoun everywhere; leading every appearance, on every TV debate, at every reunion, and in every newspaper. Basically, everywhere and barely any trace of Camille Khoury, the real candidate against Amin Gemayel. The real point of concern is whether any member of the FPM can see the difference between starting a political movement that requires a LEADER, and the making of a political party that requires a MANAGER.

Let us go back in time, when Aoun created his movement: One member from his closest ones started drawing an organization chart while all others were attempting to contribute enthusiastically, thinking that they were making history that night. Their contribution to the creation of the FPM movement became louder and louder until Aoun, who was listening to his most trusted colleagues with exasperation, nervously realized how far behind they were from his great ideas and vision. Being the Leader, he briskly claimed ownership of that crucial moment, confident that his preconceived ideas would do the job just fine. Aoun redrew the organization chart on a brand new piece of paper, exactly like he would have done it in the army. Aoun looked around, screened the faces in the room, steered in the air trying to visualize few others from older days, and started filling names in the empty boxes. He had just created a political movement and he proudly spilled it out to his team with excitement and a large smile on his face. Of course, everybody agreed with him that this is the best that can be made. It was a long night that stretched to the early hours and what Aoun did not know, was that few from the team returned home with a tail in between their legs. Every day since, unwillingly, Aoun made somebody go back home with a tail in between his legs. After a while, they all got used to it, and so did he, on the justification that it is the privilege of a LEADER.

If a movement requires a structure and a team, then a party needs a responsible team of people that are empowered. To expand from the few to the masses, time is of the essence, and therefore empowerment is key for success. That is exactly what Aoun missed and still is missing: the manager’s skills. He micromanages his whole team and every situation that arises. He basically does not trust their capabilities being not powerful enough and enough hate to reach to the masses.

Aoun presents himself as the champion of democracy, names family members in key FPM positions and then blames the others for being feudal and anti-democratic. Aoun’s supporters look exactly in the direction he wants them to look and see exclusively the problem among the March 14 political leaders. For Aoun, closing the parliament is a rightful democratic act when the majority doesn’t do what the minority wants it to do. Closing the roads and burning tires is against the law but not really when it is in the name of citizen’s freedom of speech and movement. Occupying Downtown can’t be his fault if Seniora refused to resign. Aoun’s democracy is of his own vision and creation, stretching it at every situation to meet his needs. Meanwhile his naïve supporters are just amazed and proud to have him as a chief and a champion of democracy.

Aoun simply acts and behalves like the chief of a tribe who is always right and never wrong while his fans and supporters are stupidly steering towards him with gaping mouths. For him, DEMOCRACY is simply in his path bothering him in whatever he wants to do. Aoun finds it always in the middle just in front of him, and at every occasion he never miss and tumbles on it. Aoun has the stereotype profile of a dictator and if it wasn’t because of DEMOCRACY, he would have terminated every politician, fired every responsible, criticized every head of state, and many more things.

No, Aoun is not a manager and his FPM movement will not survive him, unless new blood from within dares come forward.

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Filed under Amin Gemayel, Aoun, Camille Khoury, Fouad Seniora, Free Patriotic Movement, Lebanese Christians, Lebanon

Chameleon Murr and the implications on Metn

By Ana

It was only a few weeks back that Michel Murr made a long, comprehensive, and clear press statement where he firmly presented himself as the Christian who would be in charge of finding a compromise candidate for the Metn in the upcoming by-elections to take place on August 5. In this press conference, he had also specifically stated that he would try to make Amin Gemayel, father of the late Pierre Gemayel, the compromise candidate for both political blocs.

On Friday, July 20, Gemayel presented his candidacy to the by-elections in an emotional speech.

It is therefore quite unfortunate that yesterday, General Michel Aoun, Michel Murr, and the Armenian nationalist Tashnag Party, presented themselves as a tripartide bloc and gave their full support to FPM candidate Camile Khoury, who will be running against Gemayel. After Aoun spoke, Murr stated that the alliance “was not born yesterday,” implying that the bloc had previously met and had chosen to back an FPM candidate. So what was his grand insistence on presenting himself as a potential moderator between the two blocs? Although expected, one is always surprised to see how words never manifest themselves into action.

On another note, the Metn by-elections promise to be a very interesting experience for the FPM and their leader. Aoun was compelled to challenge Gemayel but through a proxy (Khoury) rather than presenting himself. The move is interesting on two levels. Firstly, by not running, Aoun will not have a second voting record before the presidential elections to take place in November. This means, that should Gemayel beat Khoury, Aoun will not interpret is as a personal loss on his personal ambition to take the much desired political seat. Secondly, should Gemayel beat Khoury, it will be interesting to assess the voting gap between the two. What Aoun does not wish to get, is that to manifest what he has been saying for the past few months (i.e. that the FPM has gained a broader support base), his candidate should, by default and unquestionably, get a majority of the votes in the Metn. However, not just a simply majority, but an outstanding majority. To teach the general how to count ahead of the game: a broader support base means MORE than 70 percent (which was his voting record back in May 2005).

Unfortunately, when, and I say when because I find it most probable that Gemayel will succeed his son, Khoury does lose significantly to the former president, Aoun will not interpret this as a red light that something is very wrong (i.e. his talk and the ground figures don’t add up). Let’s see how he is going to present to his constituents that the elections were undemocratic or were manipulated when he is asked by journalists to come to terms with his Metn defeat.

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Filed under Amin Gemayel, Aoun, Camille Khoury, Lebanese Christians, Lebanon, Michel Murr, Pierre Gemayel, Tashnag