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Lebanon: Another Syrian governorate! - ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive
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It is important not to overlook what is happening Lebanon today, where the situation is escalating and intensifying in a manner that goes beyond the usual “war of words”.

During recent days a selection of events and facts have come to light, all seeking to bring about a state of chaos and deliberate confusion in the country, and they can be summed up as follows:

1. The increase in kidnappings and exchanged abductions, most recently carried out by members of the Mekdad family.

2. A branch of Lebanon’s security services obtaining facts and evidence of a major plot aiming to trigger a series of bombings to create sectarian strife in Lebanon. This later became known as the case of former minister Michel Samaha, who is said to have confessed to receiving instructions from Syrian security leaders to carry out these operations.

3. The rising rate of threatening remarks exchanged amongst political forces, the latest of which being Hassan Nasrallah’s statements about the political intensification taking place in the country, stressing that Hezbollah believes the situation in Lebanon is out of control, and that everyone should assume their responsibilities.

4. The failure of the national dialogue sessions – which were held recently in the President’s summer residence on Mount Lebanon, with three political forces unable to attend citing travel impracticalities – to alleviate the internal tension currently sweeping through the country.

5. The increasing movement of displaced Syrian families across the border into Lebanon.

All this prompted the US Embassy in Beirut to warn its citizens of security risks and potential kidnappings, and also prompted France to move quickly through its Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius, who visited Lebanon and Turkey and confirmed his country’s strong fears regarding the alarming transmission of violence from Syria to Lebanon, which has been ongoing for some time.

The veteran French diplomat has touched the very nerve that threatens Lebanon, namely the transition – or perhaps expansion – of the tensioned scene from Syria to Lebanon, whereby the two opposing sides; the Syrian regime versus the Free Syrian Army, could incorporate other powers such as Hezbollah against the Sunni forces in the north of Lebanon.

This catastrophic scenario would be based on the premise that the fire is already burning so why not extend the flames to everyone?!

The real problem is that the regime in Syria no longer has red lines restricting its movements; it no longer has regional or international political considerations to take into account when it makes decisions. In short, there are no moral scruples preventing the regime from using fighter planes against its own people, and no political deterrents preventing it from expanding the scene of conflict to incorporate other countries.

In short again, nothing matters now for this bloodthirsty regime except buying another day in the sun, whatever the cost and regardless of the expansion of the tragedy!