Arab Times

‘Fair elec­tion law vi­tal for re­forms’

‘Will new PM-des­ig­nate mend Le­banon?’

- — Com­piled by Zaki Taleb Middle East News · Politics · Lebanon · Michel Aoun · Rafik Hariri · Gebran Bassil · Emmanuel Macron · Hezbollah · Lebanese Forces · France · Élysée Palace · Kish · Corona · Beirut · The Gulf Cooperation Council · Cooperation Council for the Arab States of the Gulf · World Bank · Paris · Israel · Iran · United States of America · Donald Trump · Joe Biden · Middle East · Beijing · Kuwait · Riyadh · Abu Dhabi · Lebanese Forces Party · Najib Mikati · Maronite Church

“THE nom­i­na­tion of Dr. Mustafa Adeeb to as­sume the task of the form­ing the Le­banese gov­ern­ment was sud­den with­out any prepa­ra­tions or con­sul­ta­tions and that was the man­ner adopted by Pres­i­dent Michel Aoun af­ter the res­ig­na­tion of for­mer Prime Min­is­ter Saad Al-Hariri,” colum­nist Dr. Ab­dul­mohsen Ha­mada wrote for Al-Jarida daily.

“The con­sul­ta­tions for the for­ma­tion of the gov­ern­ment be­fore the ap­point­ment of the new prime min­is­ter were car­ried out by Michel Aoun to guar­an­tee his quota and the quota of his son-in-law Ge­bran Bas­sil in the new gov­ern­ment and to con­fis­cate in ad­vance the power of the ap­pointed new prime min­is­ter, ig­nor­ing the fact that this was in vi­o­la­tion of the con­sti­tu­tion be­cause we know the con­sti­tu­tion gives the ap­pointed prime min­is­ter the right to hold con­sul­ta­tions with the lo­cal politi­cians prior to the for­ma­tion of the new gov­ern­ment.

“This method was ob­jected to by many Le­banese politi­cians, but it seems this time, the French Pres­i­dent Em­manuel Macron ex­erted pres­sure on Pres­i­dent Aoun to nom­i­nate the prime min­is­ter prior to hold­ing con­sul­ta­tions over the for­ma­tion of the new gov­ern­ment so that it falls within the ju­ris­dic­tion of prime min­is­ter-des­ig­nate,

“There is news from Le­banon that Hezbol­lah and the Amal move­ment have been ac­tive in se­cret and pub­licly to speed up the agree­ment on a name to be as­signed be­fore Macron’s ar­rival in Le­banon, and me­dia leaks re­ported that an hour be­fore the for­mer heads of gov­ern­ment met to an­nounce the as­signed name they had cho­sen, the leaks be­gan to sur­face about Mustafa Adeeb name, an im­plicit in­di­ca­tion that the de­ci­sion to name the prime min­is­ter is no longer taken by them, but rather had been con­fis­cated by Hezbol­lah and Amal, who con­sid­ered them­selves the main part­ner in de­ci­sion-mak­ing, as ev­i­denced by the fact that this duo con­tin­ued to re­ject the ac­cepted name of Am­bas­sador Nawaf Salam by a large seg­ment of the Le­banese Rev­o­lu­tion­ar­ies and the Le­banese Forces Party Le­banese, es­pe­cially the rebels and the Le­banese forces.

“MP Ni­had Al-Mach­nouk crit­i­cized the method used by pre­vi­ous heads of gov­ern­ment to name Mustafa Adeeb, and is­sued a lengthy state­ment in which he stated that the com­mit­ment of the Club of the For­mer Prime Min­is­ters to the prior ap­proval of the rul­ing coali­tion, specif­i­cally Hezbol­lah, in the name of the des­ig­nated pres­i­dent, con­sti­tutes an aban­don­ment of the na­tional sec­re­tar­iat that was placed in the hands of those who were en­trusted with it.

“How­ever, Dr. Mustafa Adeeb who has been au­tho­rized to form the new Le­banese gov­ern­ment holds PhD in Law and Po­lit­i­cal Sci­ence, and he had started his prac­ti­cal life as an in­struc­tor for the In­ter­na­tional and Pub­lic Law at var­i­ous French and Le­banese uni­ver­si­ties.

“He was cho­sen by the for­mer Prime Min­is­ter of Le­banon, Na­jib Mikati as his ad­vi­sor at the time of the Syr­ian tute­lage, and he does not know what kind of con­sul­ta­tions he was pro­vid­ing at that time. He is mar­ried to a French woman and fa­ther of five sons, and there are some news re­ports show­ing that France had played a sig­nif­i­cant role in nom­i­nat­ing him as a Le­banese prime min­is­ter, sim­ply be­cause the French of­fi­cials know him well, and we know that his fa­ther-in-law has a close re­la­tion­ship with the French El­y­see Palace.

“Adeeb felt from the early hours af­ter his nom­i­na­tion as a des­ig­nated prime min­is­ter that he was not ac­cepted by the peo­ple, and he wished to be given an op­por­tu­nity through which he could prove his abil­ity to im­ple­ment re­forms that Le­banon needs and ad­dress the greed of the cor­rupt, and the man tried to in­spect the stricken area in Gem­mayzeh and Mar Mikhael, but he was sur­prised that the peo­ple of the re­gion did not wel­come that visit, as some ac­tivists asked him to leave the area, chant­ing, ‘We don’t want you, you are one of them’ (the cur­rent Le­banese rul­ing po­lit­i­cal class).

“On the other hand, Adeeb him­self, had pub­lished a video clip on his ac­count, show­ing the at­tempt that was ex­erted to ex­pel him from the two ar­eas in ques­tion, with his com­ment say­ing ‘I do un­der­stand the wrath of the per­se­cuted peo­ple, but I un­der­take to fight cor­rup­tion”.

“Any­way, it looks dif­fi­cult to fore­cast whether or not the newly ap­pointed prime min­is­ter will be able to fight both cor­rup­tion and the cor­rupt and res­cue Le­banon from its or­deal, but it is ob­vi­ous that he re­al­izes the di­men­sions of the Le­banese prob­lem and the State’s need of re­forms.

“Con­se­quently, un­less the of­fi­cials there take the nec­es­sary re­form mea­sures, the State will be ex­posed to danger and as such we won­der if this man (Adeeb) will be in a po­si­tion to carry out the nec­es­sary dif­fi­cult task and put his name on the list of eter­nal peo­ple.

“How­ever, it is ob­vi­ous Pres­i­dent Macron had not re­ferred to the weapons of Hezbol­lah but had called only for ex­clud­ing Hezbol­lah from the par­tic­i­pa­tion in the new gov­ern­ment.

“In this con­text, we say if the new gov­ern­ment man­ages to achieve all re­forms and gain the con­fi­dence of the Le­banese peo­ple and avert the danger of famine in Le­banon and the ‘dis­ap­pear­ance’, then the con­cerned of­fi­cials, Hezbol­lah’s weapons can be thought of, es­pe­cially since he no­ticed the grow­ing di­ver­gence be­tween Bk­erke, the pa­tri­ar­chal seat, and Hezbol­lah, and the Ma­ronite Pa­tri­arch’s re­peated call for Le­banon’s neu­tral­ity and il­le­gal dis­ar­ma­ment.

“It is cer­tain that Nas­ral­lah will ob­struct any re­form steps if he feels that they threaten his in­flu­ence, es­pe­cially since he has a par­lia­men­tary ma­jor­ity that he ob­tained through the elec­tion law that was im­posed by the force of his Ira­nian weapons.

“Re­form­ing Le­banon re­quires find­ing a fair elec­tion law that guar­an­tees all the rights of the Le­banese, and that all Le­banese par­ties sit to­gether on equal foot­ing with no party us­ing its weapons to threaten the other and falsely claim that its weapons, rep­re­sent the weapons of the re­sis­tance and re­jec­tion and even­tu­ally im­pose its or­ders on all of the other par­ties.


“Le­banon is go­ing through its big­gest crises since its in­de­pen­dence in 1943, when eco­nomic sanc­tions hit the coun­try,” colum­nist Qais Al-Osta wrote for Al-Qabas daily.

“The sanc­tions were im­posed be­cause of the Hezbol­lah’s mil­i­tary ad­ven­tures in the re­gion, and this co­in­cided with a pop­u­lar move that re­sulted in the clos­ing down of the gov­ern­ment and touris­tic util­i­ties, for nearly a year fol­low­ing the global Corona pan­demic, and what com­pleted the sit­u­a­tion was the ex­plo­sion of the Beirut port, the death and in­jury of thou­sands of Le­banese, in ad­di­tion to ma­te­rial losses, es­ti­mated In bil­lions.

“The so­lu­tions are known to res­ur­rect Le­banon with some ini­tia­tives from coun­tries in­ter­ested in Le­banese af­fairs, es­pe­cially some of the Gulf Co­op­er­a­tion Coun­cil coun­tries, in ad­di­tion to loans from the World Bank and the re­vival of the Cedar Con­fer­ence, which was held in Paris years ago, and re­sulted in the es­tab­lish­ment of projects es­ti­mated at eleven bil­lion dol­lars.

“The prob­lem is that all these ini­tia­tives need two things: The first re­forms from the Le­banese gov­ern­ment re­lated to the elec­tric­ity sec­tor, the main source of cor­rup­tion, and the telecom­mu­ni­ca­tions sec­tor, cus­toms and the clo­sure of smug­gling out­lets.

“The other mat­ter is for Hezbol­lah to re­turn to the Le­banese in­te­rior, and to leave the Ye­meni, Iraqi, Pales­tinian and other are­nas in which all the ev­i­dence in­di­cates that the party has a fin­ger­print.

“Is­rael tried sev­eral times to over­come this party, but the party held up re­mark­ably mil­i­tar­ily, if we liked the party or hated it, the new war is not from Is­rael, but rather from the ma­jor coun­tries that have sup­ported Le­banon for years, and the ques­tion here is: How long the party can stand? And can the Ira­nian funds res­cue it, par­tic­u­larly un­der the cur­rent phase where Iran it­self is fac­ing an un­prece­dented fi­nan­cial cri­sis.

“For its part, Hezbol­lah is bet­ting on the ini­tia­tive of French Pres­i­dent Macron, and on the re­sults of the US elec­tions that may dis­place Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump and bring in Joe Bi­den and the at­mos­phere on the grounds will be less ag­gres­sive to­wards Iran, and there­fore Hezbol­lah.

“Any­way, mo­ti­vated by our love to Le­banon, we would like hereby to say that who had shown stead­fast­ness be­fore the tank will in­evitably be de­feated be­fore the US dol­lar.

“In other words, if Paris is to­day con­cerned about Le­banon, then it may show less in­ter­est tomorrow, and the United States be­gan to fo­cus on the Near East and left the Mid­dle East, be­cause China is its next bat­tle.

“Such be­ing the case, we would like to tell the Le­banese of­fi­cials don’t lose the com­pass, sim­ply be­cause most of your so­lu­tions used to come from three Gulf cap­i­tals, namely Kuwait, Al-Riyadh and Abu Dhabi, pro­vided that Hezbol­lah should halt its ad­ven­tures in our re­gion, oth­er­wise, any other so­lu­tions, shall remain in­ef­fec­tive and taste­less talk. Is the mes­sage clear. I hope so.”

“Voices call­ing for amend­ment of the de­mo­graphic struc­ture in Kuwait were raised with­out think­ing about the con­se­quences of a de­ci­sion which is dif­fi­cult to im­ple­ment, given that Kuwait is a work­ing coun­try and its pop­u­la­tion is rel­a­tively small,” colum­nist Adel Fa­had Al-Me­sha’al wrote for Al-Rai daily.

“It is pos­si­ble to ad­just the de­mo­graphic com­po­si­tion through the re­place­ment or Kuwait­i­za­tion pol­icy in some ad­min­is­tra­tive jobs, for ex­am­ple, be­cause it is a de­sir­able step and the num­ber of Kuwaiti grad­u­ates with such spe­cial­iza­tions could cover the man­power needs in this field. On the other hand, min­istries and the pri­vate sec­tor must op­er­ate ac­cord­ing to the mech­a­nism of work that de­pends on achieve­ment.

“Yes, I sup­port the de­mo­graphic mod­i­fi­ca­tion, but the com­pe­ten­cies we ur­gently need should be main­tained, es­pe­cially in tech­ni­cal work like doc­tors, en­gi­neers and crafts­men, not for ad­min­is­tra­tors like ad­vi­sor, sec­re­tary or typ­ist.

“Some ad­vi­sors in min­istries give oth­ers the op­por­tu­nity to see de­tails of the coun­try’s se­crets. Some­times, they even draft the res­i­dency laws in a man­ner that suits the qual­i­fi­ca­tions of their chil­dren and grand­chil­dren who could be out­side Kuwait. Some res­i­dents, who live in their coun­tries, are be­ing paid as if they are work­ing. This is cor­rup­tion and it should be elim­i­nated.

“Re­mem­ber that the peo­ple of Kuwait have learned not to turn away from those who come to them, that it is not em­bar­rass­ing for any Arab or non-Arab per­son to spend most of his life serv­ing Kuwait, and have been as­so­ci­ated with their chil­dren. There­fore, we have more than three gen­er­a­tions of them who love Kuwait, yet we de­mand for their de­par­ture.”

“The thir­tienth an­niver­sary of the treach­er­ous Iraqi in­va­sion of Kuwait re­minds us of the ab­nor­mal con­di­tions in all parts of the world. De­spite the changes in our life­style as a re­sult of the epi­demic that has spread through­out the world, it can­not be com­pared with the days of the mis­er­able in­va­sion and the con­di­tions that we lived as Kuwaitis in our coun­try or as refugees in var­i­ous parts of the world,” colum­nist Dr Balqees Al-Na­j­jar wrote for Al-Qabas daily.

“Los­ing your coun­try overnight is some­thing that nei­ther rea­son nor logic could ac­cept. When you go to sleep at home with your loved ones feel­ing a sense of se­cu­rity and safety in a peace­ful home­land, you would not think of wak­ing up to the sounds of tanks, mil­i­tary cars and stranger sol­diers de­fil­ing the soil of the home­land.

“This is ex­actly what hap­pened to the cit­i­zens and res­i­dents of Kuwait when the na­tion woke up at dawn on the sec­ond Thurs­day of Au­gust 1990 as they saw Iraqi sol­diers with tanks and mil­i­tary ve­hi­cles pound­ing high­ways, roads and streets to­wards the cap­i­tal.

“Cit­i­zens and res­i­dents on their way to work were stunned and could not be­lieve what they saw. At first glance, every­one thought the tanks and ve­hi­cles be­long to Kuwait. All of them were de­void of a slo­gan or flag in­di­cat­ing their iden­tity.

“Def­i­nitely, it was done in­ten­tion­ally by the Iraqi regime in or­der to com­plete the plan of treach­ery on the land of Kuwait.”

 ??  ?? Dr Ha­mada
Dr Ha­mada

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