Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Nazem Khoury Survives Again

No thanks to the tainted pieces of cloth that sit in their high chairs and act like they're running this sad excuse of a government.

You know, I have tried to uphold a certain degree of respect and appreciation towards the man Saniora, mostly because he took on with resolve and resilience the tremendous job of putting together a government in the murky aftermath of the Hariri assassinaion.

And also because he was an honest, hardworking man, a number cruncher that is, ever more so than a politician. And to me, that's a good thing. Or let's say it usually is.

Today, PM Saniora bless his heart, needs to forget about his numbers and crunch some heads instead.

Let's round it all up, shall we?

Five major assassinations with tens of ancillary victims, at least two additional, miraculously non-fatal assassination attempts, and multiple "small" explosions in the christian populated areas of the capital. The result of investigative "efforts"?
But of course! Got a pen and a paper? this might take a while. Alright. ONE lame syrian suspect, TWO sorry ass suspect portrayals, and... wait a second. There's no and. That's it! HAHAAAAAA! Fucking BRILLIANT.

Oh but I forget. A comprehensive UN sponsored investigation with an exquisitely detailed recount of the circumstances surrounding Hariri's assassination. Bottom line? Hang on to your seats, Syria is probably involved! Well, NO FUCKING SHIT! Syria probably involved 2al...

Now Mehlis is gone, for personal reasons, and the new Belgian prosecutor is getting death threats. Should I venture a guess about the personal reasons behind Mehlis' resignation? Quality time with his wife and kids I bet.

Anywho. Let's go back to more recent events. Hezbollah. Where to begin and where to end with Hezbollah. An armed militia with governmental and parliamentary representation with blatant, hit you between the eyes, allegiance to Syria! SYRIA! The same Syria that was kicked out of Lebanon under Lebanese public and international pressure for screwing up the last thirty years of our history!
Well call me fucking stupid if you will, but if this isn't Treason with a capital T then I don't know what is. And they have the nerve to complain about representation!

As if this weren't enough, the precious Shebaa farms came back into the spotlight a couple weeks ago maybe, and only yesterday, three to six Katyushia rockets disturb the calm of Kiryat Shmona. Who did it, I wonder. Certainly not the Hezb since they vehemently denied it. I guess it's the ghost of Christmas past. Ah the good old days. Anyway, Israel couldn't care less about who claims responsibility, and promptly retaliates, while putting the blame on... Take a wild guess? YES! The Lebanese government! How unfair... After all, it isn't our fault if Hezbollah decided to establish a militaro-politico-religious autonomy on Lebanese territory. Because we Lebanese, believe in the sacred right of free political expression and alliance. Of course we do, and that's mostly why we're so much better than most everybody else. So KUDOS to us, though BYE BYE to our country.

God I digressed. Back to where I started with this Arrrgh of a post. Mr. Saniora bless his heart.

I know, it's particularly easy to make fun and criticize when you're not soaking in the mud puddle he's probably in. Nevertheless, when my country is every criminal's safe haven, when people get killed and nobody gets caught, when military groups set up shop on our soil and challenge the very core of our struggle right in our face, when nothing, and I mean NOTHING is being seriously done to change the set "disorder" of things, I am left with no option but to say to Mr. Saniora, excuse me.. emmm sir? would you please DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT!?!?!

I mean, please?

I've pretty much given up on Lahoud leaving office before the end of his term. But you know what, who cares. Let him bask in the sun at the "bain militaire" and the Baabda Palace until he turns into a piece of bacon. We have someone who's honest, hardworking, loyal to his country, and the closest match to a leader in a leader's position we have.

All Mr.Saniora needs is a couple of steel balls, an iron fist, and a sense of urgency, and maybe we will start seeing a few criminal heads rolling at our feet.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

it's all a show
we are the audience
they are the puppets

I very much recommand you dont fall for it.
The "big ones" have a plan, all we can do is watch; whether we do that subjectively or objectively, it's up to us.

sorry, but it's the truth and i am as broken-hearted as u r. Believe me, i for one, am dying to go back to leb. But nothing's encouraging me.

3:24 AM  
Anonymous cedop said...

Please stop mentioning Hizib-shytan these people are devil worshipers. I cannot for the life of me believe that there are people who support these guys. They get their funding from Iran and their orders from Syria. Not only is this treason with a capital T, it smells of hypocricy of the highest order, given that they are so against the internationalisation of the Lebanon issue. How much more international can you get.

As for the Shia'ites in Lebanon, have they got no one else that can represent them, is there seriously no one else in the entire shi'ite community that is worthy of their vote.

As I see it, there is only one solution to the problem in Lebanon. They must immediately pass a decree that bans the Hiz-shytan military wing, and order they surrender their weapons immediately. Failure to do so will land you jail for a few months. The government got a mandate from the people for exactly this. they have the required number of seats in Parilament for this to pass. They need only to pass the decree, and then haggle over enforcement, rather than beg them to negotiate over the weapons issue.

If the Hizib-shytan continue to stubbonly hold on to their weapons, then, other groups will eventually arm themselves to protect themselves against both the Hizib-shytan and Syria. Dont assume it wont happen, it all happened before.

The government must have some foresight, it must also have the courage to do what is right for the country.

As I see it, Seniora made two fatal mistakes, he reappointed Berri to the Speaker and allowed Hizib-shytan to join the cabinet.

Is there no clause in the constitution that bans people with allegiance to a foreign country becoming members of the government.

Surely there must be...

7:45 AM  
Anonymous ghassan said...

Fouad, I am probably as equally frustrated about the lack of progress as you are. I can truly say that I feel your pain

I am even more despondent than you are becayse my analysis of the current situation in Lebanon is arguably gloomier than yours. I have reluctantly come to the conclusion that "people get the government that they deserve". A few Lebanese citizens, they are propotionally over represented on the blogsphere, have an unabiding urge to transform Lebanon into a modern democracy. The unfortunate fact of the matter is that such people represent a minority in Lebanon. How else would you explain the relatively large following of the unpatriotic and irrational positions advocated by HA and Amal? What is the rationale for having the utterances of a few men of the cloth (Bkirki, Mufti and Imama) become the final arbiters? What will you tell the youth when we reelct the same traditional political and bankrupt political leaders whose only interest is their personal glory? How can you build a nation if a large proportion of its members do not believe in it? Is it possible to create a freedom loving liberal and democratic society when when the whole notion of communal well being is allien? How can you establish a cohesive mosaic when allegiances are sectarian and even tribal? We the citizens have failed Lebanon just as much as our leaders. Our leaders are a reflection of us. They behave the way that they do because we allow them to pursue their narrow interests, actually we reward them when they follow the tarditional path of lopitics as usual. Our leaders will not change unless we. Unfortunately we have elected not to change the past and we have allowed the tired old ideas to steal the nascent revolution that never was.

I am convinced that this is Lebanons' last chance, if we fail to take advantage of this opportunity to create a dynamic civil democraticsecular society then we never will.

2:39 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's truly a shame that my gov. condemns the Lebanese gov. for these border attacks (or worse.. in the past bombed the power stations). Having said that, I used to live in Naharia and it wasnt fun getting Katushas for breakfast, but truth and politics are not the same here in the ME. Israel could speak of facts in the UN GA, but few would listen, and non would act.So the politics are local and, given, the situation quite idiotic.

The alternative is rather scary too, if you think about it. 3 or 4 escalations, namely calling Syria and Iran the culprits, and then acting in deterence (without American handcuffs)- this would move from a border dispute to potentially another War.. in which, ironically, in which we would be combatants rather than visiting as just average tourists. BTW I cant wait to cross the border as a tourist... nice blog.


9:22 PM  
Anonymous moo said...

Lebanon is not just for us. It is for orthodox, shiites, sunni, catholics,..and everyone should feel that this country is what he wants it to be. Tough. Isn't it? Did you ever try to look at the other side of the game and wonder why does Hezbollah take this stance? I cannot say that I understand them but I certainly say that they must have a point. Wanting to see arab countries and people alltogether against all ennemies. Fighting for a dream, fighting for justice. I cannot blame them. Injustice has been made, and we want them to move on, to swallow the bitter and to move on,..It is hard for them to do so. Lebanon is for everybody. It's not just for us. Let's us try to see things from their point of view. We should find a compromise. We should start from now. I want you Fouad, if you could, to write something defending Hezbollah's role. Can you do that?

11:05 PM  
Blogger ghassan said...

What is dangerously wrong with the post by moo is that it appears to be reasonable and conciliatory on the surfacebut unfortunately it rests on very shaky grounds. It suggests that we define ourselves in terms of our religious convictions instead of our humanity and nationality. In a secular society the vision of what we are should never ever be based on sectarian ideas. I submit to you moo, that it is HA that cannot and will not be capable of accepting the ideas of inclusion. HA is not a political party, it is an extention of a reigious sect.Its ideas an, values and beliefs are derived from a holy book and do not represent the ideas that are basic to a civil, democratic and inclusive society. It is rather silly, if you will excuse the expression, to suggest that HA and others must not be dismissed because there is a reason why they behave the way that they do. Under that logic nothing can ever be wrong because all actions have a rationale by those that commit them. Are we supposed to accept murder because the murderer thinks that he/she was doing the right thing when the heinous act was committed?Is a thief w, when caught, expected to be released and even encouraged because to him he thought that he was redistributing income? Yes citizens must compromise for the greater good but make no mistake that some ideas are to be held as non-negotiable. Theses basic ideas are simple and are related to allegiabce to a nation state and to the ideas of human dignity, freedom and liberty.

12:01 AM  
Blogger Fouad said...

Yehezqel, I don't think I can get into a discussion about Israel's foreign and military policy at this point. Israel and the arab/palestinian-israeli conflict and its huge repercussions on Lebanon is way too complictated and emotionally charged a topic to tackle here and now. But much as I hate to say it, Israel has the right and the duty to defend its people. As to upon whom the responsibility falls, well, as a sovereign nation, we are responsible for what happens on every last squared inch of territory within the confines of our border. So yes, technically, you are right. But I wish it were this simple. Anyway, I appreciate your visit and your comment. Come back often to share with us your point of view.

moo, Hezbollah has arguably done much to the shiite community giving it structured ideologic and political representation. It also drove the israelis out of the border, restoring Lebanon's geopolitical integrity, at least for the time being. There. Happy? But get this, what HA has accomplished is at the very heart of the problem. HA's agenda is mainly two-tiered: provide more social and political power to shiites, and abolish the state of Israel. But believe me, Lebanon's independence and sovereignty is no where on there. The equation is simple, moo. Half a million HA supporters filled the streets in support of Syria, the country that sucked the life out of us for decades on end. How on earth do you intend to reconcile this belligerent pro-syrian attitude with any degree of allegiance to Lebanon? I don't think anybody can. This is exactly where I cannot accept Hezbollah's stance or support it. All that and we didn't even touch on the flagrant incompatibilty of an eventually secular democracy with an intrinsically religious autonomously acting militia.
Lebanon is for everyone like you said. Only Lebanon is for eberyone who is for Lebanon. It's a two-way ticket you know, otherwise, the situation will be one where "what's yours is mine and what mine is mine".

12:39 AM  
Blogger Lazarus said...

Fouad - great post. And your bashing of Hezbollah is called for, after their actions - and I don't agree with moo, since there are better ways to act than how HA is currently doing. However - and this is going to sound cryptic because I can't get into details - there are certain things happening that are on a much higher level of "Treason" than what you note in your post. What you say about HA having established a "militaro-politico-religious autonomy " is absolutely true, but there are a few other individuals, some of whom are part of our "esteemed" March 14 group, that are sacrificing Lebanon in ways that I hadn't imagined.

Some will take this a typical Lebanese conspiracy. But there is evidence available that never makes it to the media. This is one of the reasons I had complained about investigative journalism. Anyway, I won't go on since I can not give more concrete details.

About your last post - this may be a bit late :) - but there are ways you can be involved in the metamorphosis. Lebanon's metamorphisis isn't just about the current situation. We also need a social change - and that starts with society. In every revolution there are a group of artists who motivate people with their paintings, poetry, novels, etc. This can be done behind a congested keyboard and an illuminated screen. What do you think?

2:27 AM  
Blogger Fouad said...

Lazarus, I realize there's much more going on than meets the eye. I know I'm only scratching the surface here. But what's underneath is almost too vile to fathom. That's politics my friend. Why I got sucked into all this, I don't know. It's always been this way, and I've always been as detached of it as can possibly be. I guess my fault was when I suddenly saw a glimmer of hope, and built on it until it shone so strong I could not see past or around it. Yet now I see it sinking back into darkness, and the pain of losing it is a little more than I thought I could handle. Like I said before, this is all too difficult.
But I'm sticking to my guns, art or anger, no matter how far reaching they are or can be. Like what I always tell myself when the outlook seems grim, it's never about the outcome, it's always about the fight.

11:56 AM  
Blogger Kathleen Callon said...


We haven't met, but from your photographs, your words, and your posts... I feel I am getting to know you.

It's obvious Lebanon is integral and essential to you. I'll begin by saying I like you, and I hope to log into your blog over the next days, weeks, and months and see an evolution, completion, and reliving of your life. This sounds strange, but I'll explain:

While your body is here, your mind is in Lebanon. You are here for a reason, and unless you fly back before you are finished, that won't change. If I were you, I'd try to focus on your purpose (finishing school?), prepare for what you want to come next (it seems like you are living to return?)... while keeping up on and sharing news and information, making sure to quote from solid sources. This is the evolution.

The completion is when you are ready (have degree?... I thought a post mentioned you were finishing a residency) and you transport your ready and knowledgeable self home to roll up your sleeves and "Be the change you want to see in the world." Gibran's murder shook you, but what you admired about him, you have inside yourself. You have his ideals, and you have your own as well. You need to use words, not weapons. (I'm not scolding you... just saying that living in the US should help you understand that aggression only creates more aggression, but truth coupled with conviction and honorable action always prevails.

Reliving is part three. Follow your dharma, help make Lebanon a better place, and do so well. I wish you the best, and if I made any wrong assumptions, I'm sorry. I just want the best for you. Peace,


12:38 AM  
Anonymous Ramz said...

heya F!

happy new year man... all the best.

new year, new blog. I'm over at moved some of my old content that I couldn't bare to delete, but it's a brand new blog... and permanent... until my next mood swing.

2:46 PM  

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