The Lebanese elections of 2022 … an exceptional moment


Some friends, as they commented on the results of the 2009 parliamentary elections, reminded me that Hezbollah “broke its promise … ‘whoever wins should rule.’ Instead, he imposed his blockade third party on the first government formed after the elections, only to overthrow it when the head of that government, Saad Hariri, entered the White House. He was prime minister of the country when he was received by President Obama and left the prime minister of a resigning government!

A friend drew my attention to Naim Qassem’s latest statements, in which he spoke of the prospect of his party losing its parliamentary majority in the elections scheduled for May 15, that is, if they do not invent excuses to postpone it. Qassem declared that “the elections are not a race for parliamentary majority. Because the country’s balance is not built through the balance of power in parliament; rather, they are linked to national and foreign balances which will have a direct impact on the choice of the next president. “

Many of my friends have spoken of Hezbollah using its arsenal to terrorize, the repeated threats of 100,000 armed men and 150,000 missiles, and the position this organization occupies within the Velayat-e Faqih regime… Hezbollah is the crown jewel of six armies built by Tehran. receive the first blow in case the Islamic Republic is the target of a military attack. Thus, it would be naive to think that this organization could step back and accept a different state of affairs. After all, Hezbollah had no qualms about tearing up the region’s map and crossing borders until it reached Yemen.

We can be sure that Nasrallah had been convinced that he would win a parliamentary majority in 2009 and took his promise for this reason. When his hopes were dashed, he was greeted halfway under the slogan “we are all under the skies of Lebanon”. Those who used this slogan ignored the will of the majority of the Lebanese. So when Hezbollah and their allies toppled the majority government and Aoun announced on their behalf that they had booked his prime minister, Saad Hariri, a “one-way ticket”, his popular base did not. not protected him since he had given up on this. As for the question of arms, it is fundamental and requires reflection, insistence on peace and that the candidates be well selected. Qassem’s concern prompted those who wish to reclaim the hijacked state to leave the pavement of history and stop waiting “until all the corpses have passed.”

For the “ctoberist ”forces, these elections were the first moment in which the political forces of change associated with the revolution of 17 October were prepared from the start. This revolution which entrenched a popular awareness of citizens’ rights and demonstrated the reach of each of the hundreds of thousands of people who distanced themselves from the primordial affiliations imposed on them when they broke with the intolerance and bigotry. Today these forces face an imposed battle against “political waste”, as former Prime Minister Tammam Salam put it. It is the fruit of a mafia alliance that has brought money and militias closer to the war, tightening its grip on power since the end of the civil war. This has facilitated Hezbollah’s leadership of the country and the consolidation of that leadership for decades, going so far – since the 2016 agreement to elect its only candidate for the presidency of the republic – as unequivocally accepting his role as a fact of life.

As for the program of the battle, it is extremely clear. It is based on the repudiation of the farm-run state and the sectarian quota-based loot-sharing regime. At the top of its list of objectives, efforts to establish a police state that protect tyrants are rejected, as is the rejection of the plan to keep Lebanon isolated from its environment and under the thumb of the “axis of resistance”. . The program also demands respect for the constitution, which has been suspended since the Syrian regime established military control over Lebanon. The objective is to create a State of law and justice, which will extend its sovereignty to the whole country and will open the door to a time of responsibility, an independent justice covering the rights of citizens. Nevertheless, it is legitimate to ask: can elections create this kind of change in Lebanon … lead it to the rosy situation described above?

In all likelihood, if the political and popular rejection of Hezbollah and its project that its parliamentary majority (currently 72 deputies out of 128) had kept secret came out through the ballot box, choosing figures of the October Revolution unequivocally on the priority of restore the state hijacked by arms, corruption and sectarianism – that is, the rejection of the dangerous ploy of uprooting Lebanon and making it a space facilitating the realization of the ploys of the rulers of Tehran, which has necessitated and requires the marginalization of authorities from above, the fragmentation of institutions and their deepening to the point that laws are applied with discretion and that the judiciary, whose independence is not respected, is targeted … In this eventuality, if the voters, as expected, sanction those who have humiliated the citizens of the country and besieged them in destitution and the specter of death by epidemic or famine, the ability of Hezbollah to maintain its dominance would face an obstacle she has not known since the beginning of her ascension and she first got her hands on the necks of the Lebanese, when she transformed the July war 2006 into a platform from which to jump into the seats of power.

In this context, Hezbollah, through Nasrallah, pushed its plot to cut ties with Saudi Arabia as far as possible, targeting the Kingdom’s rulers with the most heinous accusations and reversing the facts. In fact, he went so far as to involve the hundreds of thousands of Lebanese working in the Gulf, putting them at the heart of his campaign and calling them “hostages” held “to threaten Lebanon …”. this reveals his domestic difficulties. The party seeks to exacerbate sectarian tensions in order to escape responsibility for the snowball collapse – it is the same party that has held the reins since its invasion of Beirut in May 2008. On the other hand, he mentions obvious fears about developments on the ground resulting from recent displacements observed in the region, from Marib to Baghdad, and their implications, which have taken Hezbollah by surprise. In view of all this, it is possible, albeit with some difficulties, to open the doors to a real settlement which would launch the process of reconfiguring the composition of the authorities.

Once again, the elections could be an exceptional moment in the battle against the approach of domination imposed on Lebanon, with officials controlling the judiciary, the constitution being tampered with and the country being ruled by the whims and fatwas of the tellers. good adventure. Most importantly, there must be a relentless organizational effort that pushes for the establishment of a political opposition front that gives rise to the broadest alliance for change. The unitary state would thus be victorious, forming a human barrier made up of Lebanese citizens who would create a bulwark against the small parallel states, thus protecting the process of overhauling the composition of the authorities. The situation is fragile, difficult and complex. Neither Lebanon nor the region has ever known anything like this, and we should be very careful to let the peaceful civil battle end or to accept the naïve suggestions of those who once bet on Aoun and the “sovereignty” of its movement. They couldn’t handle the truth, so they pounced on doomed proposals like federalism, pushing a simplified narrative in its favor.

Once again, the elections are an opportunity not to be missed, because they are the moment when the Lebanese think. What will come after October 17 will be different from what preceded it, in terms of the feasibility of regaining the hoped-for national balance, which preserves freedoms and protects diversity to push for change and the passage of state management such as a farm to a normal one. Such a balance would reduce the risk of foreign interference and would have the upper hand over the choice of the new president after the presidency and the country are freed from any subordination that undermines the interests of the Lebanese.


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