Friday, 1 October 2010

From Lebanese Arena to Bigger Regional Arena, Anticipation Rules

30/09/2010 The Special Tribunal for Lebanon (STL) is no longer a matter of consensus, although it is singled out as independent article in the policy statement based on which the current government was formed.

This is not a precedent.

Article 6 of the same policy statement that establishes the three key elements to defend Lebanon, the army, the people, the resistance, has always been the aim of the pro-US March 14 bloc.

The opposition, on top of which is Hezbollah, regard the STL as a politicized tool that is being used to target the resistance, as part of a greater scheme to force changes in the region.

The March 14 bloc, namely PM Saad Hariri’s Future Movement and Samir Geagea’s Lebanese Forces, have been relentlessly defending the tribunal’s “integrity and credibility.”

In between, “moderate” players have made positions varying between wishes that the STL had never existed, and calls on the tribunal to gain back its credibility.
This means that former March 14 key figure MP Walid Jumblatt and President Michel Sleiman are not fully convinced that the STL is, at least, doing its job as it should to uncover the truth behind martyr Rafiq Hariri’s 2005 assassination.

In Lebanon, political tension has reached its maximum.
The quivers of politicians, journalists, and analysts have gone almost depleted.
Nothing has changed in talk shows; the same rhetoric is being repeated by different comrades from the same political alliances.

Apparently, this is the prerequisite at this “grace period” or “lost time”, before the STL issues its indictment, strongly expected to blame members of Hezbollah for the Hariri murder.

Everything has been said about the necessity to try the false witnesses who deluded the international investigation; this has been neglected. Hezbollah has provided crucial evidence – as recognized by the Israeli MoD – on Israel’s involvement in the murder of Hariri; this has been ignored as well.

There remains the final position which Hezbollah Secretary General Sayyed Hasan Nasrallah will make soon, after Arab-Arab (Saudi – Syrian) efforts to defuse the crisis in Lebanon come to an end, regardless of the outcome.

From the smaller scene in Lebanon to the greater one in the region, Egypt has crossed into the arena to back the March 14 alliance after Syria labeled the STL as “irredeemably politicized.”
This corroborates the notion that the STL is not a mere Lebanese issue and the repercussions of any decision by the international court will be the result of a carefully schemed plot aimed at the resistance, and through it, the region.

The Syrian Al-Watan newspaper warned against an “unprecedented escalation” since the May 2008 Doha agreement. It cited “Lebanese observers” saying that “all cards have been exposed, and the parties are playing openly pending the STL decision.”

But although the stocks of sectarian violence in the aftermath of an anti-Hezbollah indictment have been rising, Hezbollah and the opposition have been seeking to keep the disagreement over the court inside the walls of concerned institutions; the parliament and the council of ministers.

Opposition members in the Budget and Finance Parliamentary Committee have united to block the funding of the STL, thus establishing the fundamental disagreement over the court seriously regarded as “the tool sewing discord in Lebanon.” Hezbollah has warned that such an indictment is tantamount to a US invasion of Lebanon, which will definitely be confronted.

March 14 members have accused the opposition of violating the government’s policy statement, but forgot their own violation when they opened fire at article six of the same policy statement stipulating the army, the people, and the resistance as the key elements to defend the country.

The difference is that Lebanon is under constant threat by Israel which admitted defeat to Hezbollah four years ago, and therefore defense should be a matter of consensus. On the other hand, Hezbollah as a key element of defense is being threatened by the STL which has yet to materialize the credibility it lost to political bargaining at the expense of the truth and martyr Rafiq Hariri’s blood; Hariri who once told Hezbollah S.G. Sayyed Hasan Nasrallah that “the day they succeed in disarming the resistance will be the day that I retire from politics.”

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian

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