Presidential election or collapse? Lebanon's critical decision

Press Highlights
2023-08-05 | 01:25
High views
Share
LBCI
Share
LBCI
Whatsapp
facebook
Twitter
Messenger
telegram
telegram
print
Presidential election or collapse? Lebanon's critical decision
Whatsapp
facebook
Twitter
Messenger
telegram
telegram
print
5min
Presidential election or collapse? Lebanon's critical decision

As the Lebanese trajectory moves swiftly towards September and beyond, indicators are becoming increasingly crowded with real political, security, and economic pressures.

This article was originally published in and translated from the Lebanese newspaper al-Modon.
Amidst both political and diplomatic tensions, the return of French presidential envoy Jean-Yves Le Drian to Beirut is anticipated. He is prepared to facilitate consultative sessions among Lebanese factions, initially bilateral but potentially expanding into comprehensive discussions.

Le Drian has requested that various parties share their expectations and priorities for this working session. 

The scenario teeters between the possibility of a resolution and the specter of collapse, influenced by many variables that perpetuate successive pressures. 

Caretaker Prime Minister Najib Mikati has conveyed apprehensions regarding the acting governor of the Lebanese Central Bank, Wassim Mansouri, refraining from tapping into mandatory reserves without proper legislation – juxtaposed with the inability to enact such laws in the Parliament or the government.

If this financial impasse persists without a viable solution for state funding, pressure will mount further. 

This raises the prospect of the country descending into chaos rapidly, especially if Mansouri maintains his stance. 

Consequently, all options converge towards a presidential election in the upcoming autumn or a more significant collapse. This renders political factions unable to sustain the current dynamics. 

The sole and essential solution lies in electing a president and reshaping authority to prevent and mitigate the intensification of the collapse.

In this context, a renewed American involvement becomes evident. This is reflected in a communication from the US House of Representatives to President Joe Biden and another message from the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.
 
Both communications highlight Speaker of the Parliament Nabih Berri's alignment with Hezbollah, citing events from the June 14 session. 

Two perspectives emerge: one excludes imposing sanctions due to the pre-session contact between Victoria Nuland and Berri when coordination was made around the session.

This affirms the American keenness to continue communicating with Berri and not to put him in the same category as Hezbollah.

The other perspective suggests that disrupting quorum by allies of Sleiman Frangieh might negatively affect the US stance towards Berri, despite Nuland's contact with him.

These pressures indicate the continuous US Congressional pressure on the administration to impose sanctions on the Speaker of the Parliament. However, the administration refrains from such measures, instead maintaining communication. 

Some argue that the gas issue in Lebanese waters obstructs sanctions, given the administration's desire to avoid complicating the Lebanese situation. Their focus is on stability and containment. 

The facts of these pressures cannot be overlooked regarding the situation in Syria, which is experiencing a dire economic and political reality to a large extent, on the impact of stopping the path of Arab normalization with Damascus, and this means that the pressures are severe and that the two countries stand at a fundamental crossroads.

If the settlement is complex in Lebanon, while it seems clear that it is almost impossible in Syria, then difficult and harsh repercussions must be expected for the two societies, in conjunction with more international pressure or any escalation that the region may witness, which will cast harsh shadows on the economic and social realities. 

No party or environment will be immune from it. In this context, some recall the experience of Salah al-Din al-Ayyubi with wars and confrontations when he assigned the commander of his army in al-Sham to issue a decision to keep the markets open without guards and during the absence of their owners. 

Every day, he would ask if any complaints or incidents of theft were recorded, and the answer would be negative. Then Salah al-Din said: "Now it is possible to wage war or a battle, as long as the internal environment is socially fortified and there is no need or motive for dissolution."

Lebanon News

Press Highlights

Lebanon

Presidential

Political

Crisis

Jean-Yves Le Drian

United States

Nabih Berri

Hezbollah

Reserves

Najib Mikati

Syria

LBCI Next
Lebanon's security concerns: Ain Al-Hilweh and foreign embassies' warning
Unanswered questions: Beirut Blast anniversary sheds light on stalled investigations
LBCI Previous
Download now the LBCI mobile app
To see the latest news, the latest daily programs in Lebanon and the world
Google Play
App Store
We use
cookies
We use cookies to make
your experience on this
website better.
Accept
Learn More