Sunday, June 17, 2007

Lebanon, towards UN Protectorate Mandate?

With the assassination of Walid Eido taking place, Lebanon has jumped to a new stage of complexity amongst war with Fatah Islam, the highly controversial Jund el Sham, Iranian and Syrian escalation versus US and Israeli hegemony over the Middle East, and of course the ongoing explosions (which the last made my house dance!)

Last year in August 2006, Lebanon for the first time almost in two decades witnessed the descent of the Lebanese Army to the South up to the borders. Lebanon’s army going to the South was highly controversial because those who supported the idea meant they were crippling the Resistance. With the Lebanese army, due to UN resolution 1701, over 10,000 UNIFIL soldiers came to South Lebanon to control arms flowing outside the Lebanese Army, primarily Hezbollah. I still insist why UNIFIL are not distributed on the Israeli side as well, since they are breaching UN 1701 on daily basis (bulldozers, shooting at civilians, aerial flights of the Israeli Air Force…etc). Syria threatened to close its borders in case UNIFIL soldiers monitored the Lebanese/Syrian borders, even if the UNIFIL soldiers were standing on the Lebanese side of the borders. Which is ironic judging how Syria excused Israel from rockets falling close to its borders, and raising its hands that “NO it wasn’t on our side!” then they took the credit as the victors of the July war (what gives?!).

This was the beginning of the end of Lebanese Sovereignty which was restored from the ruthless and corrupt Baathi system.

Eventually, with the reactionary Opposition having the Speaker of the Parliament, the Lebanese Parliament didn’t meet since December, ever since the Opposition began their open demonstration. Moving on, the Pro-West reactionary government succeeded, after heavy clashes with the Opposition, to get the UN to agree on establishing the International Tribunal to investigate Rafiq Harriri and others. With that, the government hopes to oust Syria permanently out of Lebanese affairs, or at least to strike a final blow against Hezbollah who publicly celebrate their good relations with Syria, and have financial and religious ties (Vilayat el Faqih) with Iran (both despised by the West).

With the Tribunal fully effective, that was part II of getting Lebanon into the arms of the International Community, while its people are gradually losing sovereignty because the government officials want to secure their interests and sources of income.

Third, with everything crippled on parliamentary and almost governmental level, three ministries have been fully active: Ministry of Interior who keep failing to provide security for the Lebanese. Actually, the Opposition hate the Ministry of Interior since during the July war, a commander of a certain Security Forces served tea to the Israelis. (The Joke goes: Fatah Islam demanded equality to the Israelis and requested that the Ministry of Interior serve tea to them). The Ministry of Interior (along with the Army) have been also behaving in several occasions racist to Palestinians living in the Urban side of Lebanon who are involved in relief work.

The scary part is the Ministry of Finance, which is the child ministry of the late Rafiq Hariri, whose plan to bury Lebanon in the WTO for different reasons. Currently, Minister Az’ur is still fully active with that plan, under 14th of March blessings (including the ‘leftist’ Elias Atallah), and the next couple of meetings, it is anticipated that the Lebanese Parliament would vote for adopting WTO procedures to attain membership and attempt to get rid, in another way, from Syrian Hegemony, while the US would increase their sphere of activity through out Lebanon.

Now, with the assassination of late MP Walid Eido, 14th of March, on the same day, made it clear they are going to ask for assistance from the International Community to monitor and control illegal activity on the Syrian Side, which Syria would react by closing borders. This is one messed up scenario, I sense we are almost close to become a UN protectorate while most of the Lebanese preach that a civil war is coming and take it for granted.

Meanwhile, social life has been as slow as ever. With Lebanon gradually becoming the next Iraq in terms of explosives, few people dare to go out of fear that this car parked or that car might carry explosives. Meanwhile Beqaa valley witnessed more arrests as suspected people with acquisition with arms. Now, everywhere is fire and Lebanon is more bi-polar as ever, specially yesterday Hezbollah captured three security forces in Dahhieh region (Beirut Suburbs) and released them later after interrogation. The North witnesses heavy confrontations between the army and Fatah Islam whereby Palestinian citizens, activist volunteers (such as the Red Cross), and Lebanese civilians are paying the price.

Worse, the South is on fire ever since the unknown militants launched two Katyoshas on Kiryat Shmona (Northern Israel). The reactionary government and opposition still clash each other to grab piecemeal profits. Seems that Lebanon would become the next target as a UN mandate protectorate. Personally I cant tell the difference between the government and the opposition.

Welcome to Lebanon, need a guide? Make sure that guide got militia contacts to really see the real Lebanon, and not only our splendid wonderful nightclubs.



Puppeteer said...

Now sincerly, pleas tell me, which do you personally preffer: Syrian hegemony or Saudi/US/Israel hegemony? You have to give this to our boys: they know how to create security.

Yet, I feel the biggest chalenge for the Lebanese would be putting aside racism, sectarianism, class-ism and unite once and for good. Guess I would be asking for the imposible, no?

MarxistFromLebanon said...

neither nor puppeteer, I oppose both regimes as oppressors on the behalf of their people.

I sure do not like Syrian intervention on our side, or Saudi or whatever...

All the Arab nations got sectarianism, problem with Lebanon, its freedom allows it to be displayed much more than what is boiling down.

As regard to Security, they can easily stirr problems since they were part of it (well hunting those who opposed their corruption over here and tresspasses on us activists :)

Even their security couldn't block (still as suspects also) the assassination of Harriri and the trigger of domino effect.

Besides, not only the people in Lebanon are racist, racism exists everywhere in the Arab world :)

Puppeteer said...

Well could be that all (other) Arabs are racist, but when you're the constant victim of racism you don't usually pass it along. I'll tell you this from my experience: I was racist when in Europe, but Syria erased all my racist feelings and thoughts. For example, if we were truly racist, would Iraquis still be fleeing to our country? Would the Palestinians have the freedom to WALK wherever they feel and SPEAK their accent? I won't even bring up more serious issues. Would we have kicked the Lebanese tourists playing snobs in Shaalan like our workers were burned alive with their tents last week in Tripoli?

No, my dear MFL, not all Arabs are racist, only those that claim themselves "civilised". Anyway, I can't complain, isn't racism the core of the Western "Civilisation" some of us are so eager to import?

MarxistFromLebanon said...

dearest most adorable puppeteer

Racism errupts in different way, mainly related to nationality, ethnic identity, and Sect.

For starters, the Palestinians do have better life in Syria (actually anywhere in the Arab world except Lebanon who most of them are stuck in the refugee camps)... but the Palestinians are not as free as you claim in Syria ;) ... we both know the level of freedom there as well. In Lebanon we lived it... and had myself slapped couple of times by 2nd bureau for demanding freedom of expression.

2nd, the case of Palestinian freedom in Lebanon was strong prior to the civil war , and proof is that the PLO declared West Beirut as their own capital and stronghold, specially after being kicked out by King Hussein of Jordan, to the extent the PLO ran their own nightclubs, their own checkpoints, and others, due to the freedom enjoyed in Lebanon (Freedom is a double edge sword when the central government and its army is weak).

3rd, in face of emminent death, the Iraqis would flee anywhere, we have seen it in the face of the ethnic cleansing of the Israelis back in 1948, the Palestinian refugees ran anywhere they can find no zionist bullets flying towards them.

fourth, reaction brings further reactions (not that I am justifyng it), but you have to keep in mind in Lebanon, a lot of people were brutally terrorized by the Baathi regime, technically a lot of workers had 2nd bureau infiltrated their poor sleeping places, and worse Lebanese pethatic politicians realized it. Moreover, in Lebanon, several Syrians used to behave that Lebanon is their land or they are the rulers (mainly on the student and business level) which triggered another chain reaction, while let us not forget that a lot never forgot the brutality of the Syrian soldiers during the civil war on the Lebanese civilians (not to forget how they had a hand in igniting it).

Fifth, nothing wrong with importation if the idea is good. The case of the Republic is one, Marx is viewed as second. Truth is truth is good anywhere applicable.

Racism always existed in the Arab nations, for example as a citizen carrying the Lebanese citizenship, I also faced racism almost everywhere I went in the Arab world.


Aaron A. said...

Great Post, Learned a lot.

I love the tourist insert.

I think they left out the "Make sure that guide got militia contacts" in the last Globe Trecker.

Anonymous said...