Middle-east Arab News Opinion | Asharq Al-awsat

What is the Price to Pay? | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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What does the Lebanese opposition want to do to the people and the land? What will the Hezbollah-Aoun alliance accomplish after declaring its rebellion and calling upon the Lebanese people to revolt against the government?

This alliance’s biggest ambition is to overthrow Siniora’s government – but the question the oppositional forces should be asking themselves is: What next? If Siniora’s government falls, will the oppositional minority form a Lebanese government? What happens if the parliamentary majority decides to boycott it? What dark political tunnel will Lebanon enter? Who will benefit from this state of paralysis and the political and economic strife that Lebanon will go through in the aftermath?

Is there an absence of wisdom in Lebanon? Have the shallow interests of parties overcome the wider interests of the nation? Have the conflicted regional powers succeeded in transferring their crises to Lebanon, using this small peaceful country as a card for political negotiations, disregarding the price its people will pay? Those who love Lebanon are saddened by the state of affairs it has reached. Political leaders implicate Lebanon in conflicts, crises, and wars for which the ordinary Lebanese citizen pays the price. Confusion sets in between animosity for the government, and for the state and society.

In a democratic country, there exists a legitimate right to use all means to oust a government – there are unobjectionable democratic mechanisms for that – but to resort to the street and use it to settle political scores is a nihilistic project that will not bring safety to Lebanon. A war in which a street is pitted against another and a faction clashes with the other is a war in which everyone will pay.

And yet the odd thing is that the Lebanese are the last to need such advice, as they have been through a civil war that demolished and obliterated everything where the people paid with the blood of their youth, sacrificing stability and living under a severe economic crisis. They were supposed to learn from this bitter experience, to fortify themselves against hatred, infighting and wars.

The Lebanese state of affairs is a model for the absence of mind, wisdom, and responsibility. The ordinary Lebanese citizen is the direct victim of politicians who do not see past their personal interests and those of their parties.