هل تعود الروحُ إلى الحريريّة السياسيّة؟

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ديسمبر 12, 2019


د. وفيق إبراهيم

الضغوط الاميركية والاوروبية على لبنان لا تعمل إلا من اجل تمكين نفوذها العام في السياسة والاقتصاد الى الاستراتيجية، لكنها تحتاج في هذا العملية الى واجهات ترفع شعارات داخلية للتمويه، فيستفيد الخارج منها مفسحاً المجال لقوى لبنانية، تصعد في السلطة الى حدود الإمساك بها.

واحدة من هذه القوى هي الحريرية السياسية التي استطاعت بدعم خارجي سياسي تشكل في 1982 من تقاطعات أميركية سعودية وسورية، من الإمساك بالدولة على قاعدة ان صاحب المعادلة هو المرحوم رفيق الحريري الذي كان يشرف على تحاصص داخلي، وعملية إنماء أديا بعد 27 عاماً الى افلاس بانهيار اقتصادي لا مثيل له منذ تأسيس لبنان الحديث في 1943.

حتى أن البلاد تقبع حالياً في قلب ازمة اقتصادية بنيوية سببها طبيعة الدولة غير المنتجة، الفساد السياسي وإنفاق مصرف لبنان المركزي وكامل الإيداعات المصرفية لديه وذلك على حاجات الطبقة السياسية وفسادها وأرباح المصارف وصولاً الى أموال التقاعد والضمان، هذا يكشف مدى عمق الانهيار وتجذّر الفساد.

إن هذه الطبقة نفسها تنتظر حالياً معونات اوروبية وغربية لإنقاذ ما يمكن إنقاذه، بمعنى أنها تمارس لعبة الانتظار لإعادة إنتاج دورها السياسي من خلال الأموال الخارجية.

لكن الراصد لحركة التاريخ يعرف أن لا أموال أجنبية يجري توزيعها كحسنات على بلدان منهارة، بقدر ما تمثل هذه الانهيارات كمائن وفخاخاً لاعتقال بلدانها وأسرها ضمن النفوذ الاقليمي والدولي والممارسات لإحسان مشبوه له خلفياته الاستراتيجية المختبئ خلف بلاغة اللغة.

هناك اذاً حراك شعبي يطالب بإسقاط الطبقة السياسية بكاملها وعلى رأسها الحريرية السياسية، وهناك ضغط اميركي اوروبي لتشكيل حكومة تكنوقراط برئاسة سعد الحريري، ما يضع هذا الحراك في مواجهة النفوذ الغربي والحريرية في آن معاً، فهل هذا يكفي؟

الواضح أن اصحاب النفوذ الخارجيين لم يجدوا في حريرية سياسية متهمة بتدمير لبنان وحريرية إدارية رعت عملية إفلاس إداراته، لم يجدوا فيها الأداة الداخلية الملائمة لإحداث انقلاب كبير يستطيع تدمير معادلة تحالفية راسخة بين التيار الوطني الحر وحزب الله وحركة امل.

ولهذا أسبابه التي تبدأ بتراجع هذه الحريرية وطنياً وضمن مداها المذهبي السني، فقام الاستاذ الخارجي بنسج تقاطعات بين الحريري وحزبي القوات لجعجع والاشتراكي لجنبلاط. محركاً احزاباً صغيرة وجمعيات تعمل داخله وخارجه.

كان المطلوب إعادة ضخ عيارات جديدة من القوة في جسد حريرية متداعية الى ان توصل مهندسو إعادة إنعاشها الى ضرورة عودتها الى الإمساك بطائفتها من خلال أهم مركز ممسك بالدين والغيب في بلد مزدحم بالطوائف والمذاهب والملل.

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فكان سماحة المفتي دريان جاهزاً لإصدار حظر ديني يمنع على كل مسلم سني ان يصبح رئيساً لمجلس الوزراء باستثناء «السعد». فجاءت الفتوى لصالح احتكاره الفردي لهذا الموقع، ومنع أي قوة أخرى منافسة من طرح اي اسم آخر، وإلا فإن غضباً ربانياً قد يرسل خصمه وبسرعة البرق الى جهنم وجوارها.

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بهذه الطريق أصيبت الحريرية بورم غير صحي في الحجم، لا يرقى الى مرتبة الإنعاش، لان قوتها الظاهرة حالياً تستمد من اللعب بالسلب وليس بالإيجاب، اي باستعمال التحريض المذهبي الطائفي وليس بالإقناع السياسي الوطني.

هناك إضافات أقوى خدمت عودة الروح الى الحريرية السياسية، وتتجسّد بإصرار حزب الله وحركة أمل على إعادة تكليف السعد لتشكيل الحكومة لأسباب داخلية وخارجية، وأولها أنها تخدم تنفيس الاحتقان المذهبي والطائفي وتلبي تأييداً أميركياً أوروبياً خليجياً له لثقة هذه القوى في الولاء الغربي للحريرية منذ تأسيسها على يد المرحوم رفيق الحريري وعلاقاته الحميمة بآل سعود.

بذلك يجمع رئيس حكومة تصريف الأعمال سعد الحريري بين التأييد الاميركي الاوروبي والطائفة السنية وولاء حلف جنبلاط جعجع والموافقة القسرية لأمل وحزب الله إنما بشروط. فهل تكفي هذه العناصر لعودة السعد الى رئاسة الحكومة وعودة الروح الى الحريرية السياسية؟

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لقد منحت هذه العناصر قوة لسعد الحريري كي يتمسّك بحكومة تكنوقراط، مستنداً إلى معادلة خطيرة جداً وهي «إما أن أكون أنا أو لا يكون البلد» فيبدو بالمواربة أنه ملتزم سراً بإصرار أميركي على ابعاد حزب الله ووزير الخارجية باسيل، عن الحكومة مُشرعاً الابواب لحكومة متأمركة قد لا تتأخر بعد تشكيلها عن المطالبة بتجريد حزب الله من سلاحه حين تتأمن ظروف إقليمية او داخلية ملائمة لها.

ألم يفعل المطران عودة الأمر نفسه في عظته في الكنيسة بمناسبة دينية؟ متجاهلاً الأهمية الوطنية لحزب الله في مجابهة «إسرائيل» والارهاب، فلو لم يقف حزب الله في وجه إرهاب كوني مدعوم من قوى غربية وخليجية وتركية، أكان يمكن لأي مطران أو مفتٍ أن يلقي خطباً عصماء أو يرعى صلوات جامعة؟

الحريري اذاً قاب قوسين أو أدنى من تكليفه بتشكيل حكومة جديدة لا بدّ أن يراعي فيها تمثيل حزب الله والتيار الوطني الحر ولو كره الكارهون، مستفيداً من دعم أوروبي له بحكومة تكنوقراط فيها سياسيون بأعداد لا تزيد عن الأربعة وزراء بمقاسات معتدلة.

وبذلك يستفيد من إسناد مجموعة الدعم الدولي للبنان، المنعقدة في باريس التي قررت إرسال دعم اقتصادي جديد لإنقاذ لبنان من الانهيار الاقتصادي.

فهل تعود الروح الى الحريرية السياسية؟هذا ما يأمله الحريري، لكن معادلات القوة التي يمسك بها ثلاثة أطراف هي التيار الوطني الحر وحزب الله والحراك الشعبي تؤكد أن مرحلة الانتفاخات الطائفية ذاهبة الى ضمور وسط صعود للقوى الوطنية التي تقاتل كل أنواع السرطانات الداخلية في النظام الطائفي اللبناني والخارجية في «إسرائيل» والنفوذ الغربي الذي يلوح بالإنقاذ المالي لتطبيق اهداف سياسية متهالكة.

الوقوع في الفِخّ

ديسمبر 7, 2019

د. عماد عكوش 

عندما بدأ الحراك في 17 تشرين الأول، تأمّلنا خيراً في تحقيق الإصلاح السياسي، والاقتصادي، وكان مفترضاً أن يلاقي الحراك السياسيين الذين يحملون لواء محاربة الفساد ليكونوا سنداً داعماً ضاغطاً لتحقيق هذه الإصلاحات، وكان يمكن ان يحدث هذا التعاون تغييراً جذرياً في السياسة والاقتصاد. ولا زلنا نأمل هذا التعاون علنا نستطيع ان نحدث تغييراً في الواقع الطائفي الحالي.

في بداية الحراك نزلت الناس وبشكل عفوي تطالب بمحاسبة الفاسدين وإعادة المال المنهوب، لكن هل يمكن تحقيق ذلك بالشعارات فقط أم نحن بحاجة الى من يقدّم قوانين في هذا المضمار، وبالتالي بحاجة الى نواب نظيفي الكفّ يقفون الى جانب هذا الحراك؟

لقد كانت هذه البداية مخيفة للولايات المتحدة الأميركية لكون معظم المتهمين بالفساد هم حلفاء لها، لذلك لجأت الى زرع مجموعات منظمة ضمن الحراك تنادي بشعار “كلن يعني كلن” حتى تضمن عدم قيادة هذا الحراك أو على الأقل دخول الحزب بكل ثقله في هذا الحراك.

نعم لقد استطاعت هذه المجموعة إخراج كل الأحزاب حتى مَن لا يوجد لديه أي ملف فساد، وبالتالي أخرجتها من إمكانية الاستفادة منها في عملية الإصلاح عبر رفع شعار “كلن يعني كلن”. وكانت هذه الشعارات مقصودة ومقصود من ورائها إخراج هذه الأحزاب، لأن دخول هذه الأحزاب ضمن المنظومة الحركية للثوار كان يمكن أن يضاعف من شعبية هذه الأحزاب؛ وبالتالي فإن المقصود من وراء خروج هذا الحراك عبر مجموعات منظمة بهذه الشعارات لن يحقق الهدف الأساسي منها وهو إضعاف قوى الإصلاح والسيادة.

كما وقعت أيضاً هذه الأحزاب الإصلاحية في الفخ الذي نصبه لها هذا الجزء من الحراك، بحيث أصبحت في الجانب الآخر من الضفة، وبدأت تدافع بها عن نفسها تجاه من يتهمها بالشراكة مع الفساد، وبالتالي أصبحت أسيرة هذا الدفاع، ولم تعد تتمكن من الوقوف الى جانب هذا الحراك أو الاستفادة منه لفرض محاربة الفساد ولفرض الإصلاح السياسي والاقتصادي في البلد.

كما فرضت في المقابل الولايات المتحدة على الأحزاب الحليفة أن تخرج من الحكومة فكانت استقالة الرئيس سعد الحريري واستقالة وزراء القوات والضغط لاستقالة وزراء الاشتراكي. كما فرضوا على هذه الأحزاب ان تدخل بطريقة او بأخرى في هذا الحراك مع القيام ببعض الخطوات الاستفزازية والتي طالت الحزب وبيئته حتى تستدرجه هو وبيئته الى الشارع، وبالتالي حصول صدام على الأرض يبرر تدخلاً أممياً أو دولياً.

لقد استطاع مَن رسم هذا الفخّ أن يوقع بين الناس العفوية التي نزلت الى الشارع بكل عفوية وبين الأحزاب الإصلاحية والتي تبنت قوانين إصلاحية كثيرة ولازلنا نأمل أن يتم، لكن بالتأكيد هذا الأمر أصبح صعباً جداً، لكن هل يمكن إنجاز توافق أو تسوية معينة بين هذا الحراك وهذه الأحزاب مع تشكيل الحكومة الجديدة، أم أن هذا التوافق غير مقبول لا اليوم ولا في الغد؟

مواضيع متعلقة

دار الإفتاء»: الحريري أو لا أحد

مصادر «البناء»: لا حكومة بشروط بيت الوسط وتفعيل «تصريف الأعمال» حتى إشعار آخر

ديسمبر 9, 2019

محمد حمية

لم يصمد خيار تكليف المهندس سمير الخطيب حتى موعد الاستشارات النيابية، فالدعوة لاستشارات بعبدا كشفت حقيقة المواقف وسياسة حرق المرشحين التي يتبعها الرئيس سعد الحريري منذ ترشيح النائب محمد الصفدي حتى الخطيب مروراً بالوزير السابق بهيج طبارة وذلك بغية فرض نفسه على الأكثرية النيابية مرشحاً أوحد؛ أما الأخطر في الأمر والذي عقد الأزمة أكثر، فهو موقف المرجعية الدينية للطائفة السنية بتزكية الحريري وحجب الغطاء عن أي مرشح بديل مكرّسة بذلك قاعدة جديدة: الحريري أو لا أحد، ما يعني إغلاق الباب بإحكام أمام تسمية أي مرشح بديل ممكن أن تكلفه الأكثرية النيابية أكان مستقلاً أو من اللقاء التشاوري للنواب السنة، ما أثار استياء «اللقاء التشاوري»، مشيراً في بيان بعد اجتماعه مساء أمس في دارة النائب عبد الرحيم مراد، بحضور جميع أعضائه، أن

«مصادرة الحياة السياسية من قبل المرجعيات الدينية يُنهي دور المؤسسات الدستورية، وفي طليعتها المجلس النيابي، ويصادر الحرية السياسية الوطنية التي تجلّت في حراك الشعب اللبناني المنتفض على سياسة الفساد وتوزيع المغانم الذي أوصل البلاد الى ما نحن فيه، ويسيء إلى الدور الروحي للمرجعيات الدينية التي تجمع ولا تفرق، وتنأى بنفسها عن زواريب الحياة السياسة والألعاب السياسية الرخيصة».

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وبعد زيارة الخطيب الى دار الفتوى ثم الى بيت الوسط وإعلان انسحابه من السباق الى رئاسة الحكومة، أجرى رئيس الجمهورية العماد ميشال عون سلسلة مشاورات واتصالات لاتخاذ القرار المناسب في ضوء التطورات، وتلقى عون اتصالاً من الحريري طالباً منه تأجيل الاستشارات النيابية الملزمة ثم اتصل رئيس الجمهورية برئيس مجلس النواب نبيه بري للتشاور، قبل أن يعلن عون في وقت متأخر من ليل أمس تأجيل الاستشارات الى الاثنين المقبل.

في المقابل أشارت مصادر في تيار المستقبل لـ»البناء» الى أن«الإجماع السياسي والديني حول الحريري يفرضه كمرشح أول، لكنه لم يجد أن الظروف مناسبة لعودته الى رئاسة الحكومة في ظل شروط الفريق الآخر عليه، فلا يريد تكرار تجربة الحكومة المستقيلة»،موضحة أن«عودته تقتضي إبرام اتفاق سياسي جديد مع الأطراف الأخرى وعلى رؤية وسياسة واضحة، والمهلة الإضافية لموعد الاستشارات ستكون فرصة للتوصل الى اتفاق لعودة الحريري»،مضيفة أن«أي مرشح آخر الخطيب أو غيره مقبول لدى الحريري لكن وفق شروط معينة لم يقبل بها عون وفريق 8 آذار».وجددت المصادر«إصرار الحريري على حكومة تكنوقراط مخصصة لمعالجة الأزمات الاقتصادية والمالية بعيداً عن المقاربات والنزاعات السياسية».

ولفتت أوساط سياسية لـ»البناء» الى أن «تأجيل الاستشارات جاء بعد مشاورات داخلية وخارجية وتحديداً فرنسية لبنانية، لترقب نتائج مؤتمر باريس على الصعيدين المالي والسياسي وتوضّح المشهد الداخلي أكثر».

في المقابل، أشارت مصادر مطلعة لـ»البناء» الى ان

«خطة الحريري كانت منذ استقالته ولا زالت اللعب في الوقت الضائع لفرض أمر واقع على فريق المقاومة، إما أنا رئيس بشروطي، أي حكومة تكنوقراط من دون التيار الوطني الحر وحزب الله وإما لا أحد، وإبقاء الأزمة مستمرة وتحميل خطر الفراغ السياسي وبالتالي التداعيات الاقتصادية والمالية والأمنية لفريق عون – حزب الله».

وأضافت المصادر أن

«حزب الله مستاء من سلوك الحريري حيال الملف الحكومي»، مؤكدة أن «قبول شروط الحريري لعودته الى رئاسة الحكومة غير وارد وإن طال أمد تصريف الأعمال سنوات»، وكشفت ان «شروط الحريري لعودته لرئاسة الحكومة لم تتغيّر، فهو يريد حصر قرار الحكومة السياسي والمالي والاقتصادي والخارجي بيده».

كما تحدّثت المصادر عن تنسيق بين الحريري ورئيس الاشتراكي وليد جنبلاط ورئيس القوات سمير جعجع ومع بعض مجموعات الحراك في الشارع لإجهاض الاستشارات لإبقاء الازمة ومفاقمة الوضع الاقتصادي والمالي بهدف الضغط على رئيس الجمهورية وحزب الله للسير بحكومة وفق الشروط الحريرية التي تُخفي الشروط الأميركية.وفي إطار ذلك، حذّر وزير الخارجية جبران باسيل السبت من أن «لبنان مهدّد في حال استمرت التوترات الحالية التي تشهدها، بالوقوع في فوضى لن تكون خلاقة بل ستكون مدمّرة». ودعا باسيل إلى تطبيق الإصلاحات المطلوبة لحماية البلد من التدخلات الخارجية والانهيار المالي والاقتصادي.

مواضيع متعلقة

The Empire strikes back – US incited unrest in Iraq, Lebanon and Iran is Washington’s revenge against the Islamic Republic

By Aram Mirzaei for The Saker Blog

The Empire strikes back – US incited unrest in Iraq, Lebanon and Iran is Washington’s revenge against the Islamic Republic

Since October,riots and unrest have wrecked havoc across Lebanon, Iraq and Iran. Iraq has suffered the worst as reports suggest over 300 people have been killed in the riots. In Lebanon, the US and its vassals have been busy hijacking the people’s grievances over the massive corruption among government officials. Followers of US puppets Samir Geagea and Saad Hariri have been blocking roads in an attempt to shut down the country, and to provoke a response from Hezbollah, thus setting the stage for a new civil war. In Iran, protests over gas price hikes have been hijacked by US backed MEK terrorists and Royalists loyal to the son of the late Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, with acts of violence and thuggery as they have burned down bank offices and government buildings. Luckily, in Iran these rioters and terrorists were dealt with swiftly and decisively, with over 1000 arrests being made within days after the so called “protests” began.

To some of us, these riots were expected as the Zionist axis have made these threats since several years back. Two years ago, the eccentric psychopath Saudi Prince Mohammed Bin Salman threatened to incite riots and violence inside the Islamic Republic. “We won’t wait for the battle to be in Saudi Arabia,” he said, without elaborating on policies. “Instead, we will work so that the battle is for them in Iran, not in Saudi Arabia.”

Another reason for expecting the current chaos can be found in Syria and Yemen. Only fools would believe that Washington really would just pack their bags and leave Syria without seeking revenge for the humiliation they suffered after their defeat. It’s never that easy with the Zionist Empire. So they pull out of Syria and strike back with force against the Islamic Republic’s allies across the entire region, in an attempt to break the alliance between these countries. In Yemen, Washington suffered humiliation after the Houthis destroyed half of Saudi Arabia’s oil production within hours, effectively proving that the US Patriot Missile Defence system is useless.

Washington’s hand can be found in all three of these countries who have been targeted. In Iran, the initial protests were genuine, this is a fact that even the government admitted immediately. Reducing petrol subsidies on the cheapest fuel in the region has been an issue on Iran’s political agenda for years, one that became more urgent after Washington exited the JCPOA last year and imposed sanctions on Iran again. This move was necessary, and the money saved will go to the poor and needy. Western commentators immediately spinned it into “anti-regime protests”. Suzanne Maloney of the Brookings institution declared that “Iranian protesters strike at the heart of the regime’s legitimacy,” France 24 asked if is this “a new Iranian revolution?” And multiple other western media outlets slammed Iran’s “brutal crackdown” against its people, with false reports ranging from 100 to 2000 “killed by security forces”. Even though the Internet was disabled for nearly a week, somehow videos and pictures made their way to Twitter accounts of notorious anti-Iran commentators and “analysts”. All over the cyber space, so called expat Iranians, supporters of the Washington backed MEK terrorists ran rampant with massive propaganda campaigns. Hundreds of thousands of anti-Iran tweets exploded on Twitter as so called analysts, “think tanks”, media personalities, “activists” and politicians spewed lies on top of lies. And they wonder why the Islamic Republic shut down the internet?

Washington overtly offered its support to the rioters with the ever more despicable Mike Pompeo even taking to Twitter where he asked “Iranian protestors” to send him pictures and videos of the “regime’s crimes”. A few days later, Washington sanctioned the Islamic Republic’s minister of information for the Internet blackout.

Seeing as they couldn’t intimidate Iran into submission through threats of imminent war, they placed their hopes on subversion and internal attacks. Yet again they failed because they have failed to understand the Islamic Republic for over 40 years now. This country is NOT like most other country, it is not like Bolivia where Army chiefs openly backed by Washington easily could just topple the government. It is exactly for this reason that the IRGC was created. If the Iranian Army would ever attempt a coup, the IRGC, who is much more powerful than the army would immediately crush them.
In Lebanon, Washington exposed itself and its complicity in the riots when former US ambassador to Lebanon Jeffrey Feltmann said that ‘the demonstrations and the reactions to them by Lebanese leaders and institutions, fortunately, coincide with US interests.’ Wherever Washington “supports” protests and riots, it can be concluded that they have a hand in it. The protests in Lebanon are a bit more complicated than the rather obvious ones in Iran and Iraq.

The closure of the main roads and the deliberate inaction of the Lebanese army forces due to US pressure is not surprising. The main roads being closed have been carefully selected. They have closed the roads linking southern Lebanon to Beirut and linking Baalbek and the road to Damascus with the capital Beirut. These areas are mainly inhabited and used by Shia. The roads are being blocked mainly in certain sectarian areas controlled by supporters of the caretaker Sunni Prime Minister Saad Hariri and his Druze ally Walid Jumbblat. The closure of other roads in the Christian dominated Dbayeh and in Tripoli by followers of the Zionist and war criminal Samir Geagea, leader of the notorious “Lebanese Forces”, are to divert attention from the main aim: challenging Hezbollah.
The goal is to force Hezbollah into the streets to confront the culprits that are blocking roads. Hezbollah is aware of this and is trying to avoid responding to provocations.
The aim is not to see Hezbollah defeated by the initial clashes; the firepower, training and military organisation of Hezbollah cannot be defeated by enthusiastic mercenaries and locals. The aim is to deprive Hezbollah of its legitimacy and pay a heavy price for its “unforgivable” victories in Syria and Iraq and its support to the Palestinians and the Yemeni.
Despite what is being claimed about Lebanon’s economy, the country’s financial problems are not the primary issue. Their debt (around 35 billion dollars) is in line with what Saudi Arabia is bleeding every year in their tragic war of terror on Yemen.
Sectarian elements and foreign intervention are managing to divert attention from the real national demands that have been overwhelming the Lebanese since decades. The foreign intervention is not relying on the justified demands of protestors in its confrontation with Hezbollah. It is relying on sectarian Lebanese who want to contribute to the fall of Hezbollah from the inside. This is not surprising because Lebanon is a platform where the US, EU, and Saudis are strongly present and active against the Resistance Axis.

In Iraq, the Zionist Axis has continued on the same theme, grasping for a geopolitical angle: protests in neighbouring Lebanon and Iraq are being cast as a regional insurrection against Iranian influence. Zionist Mark Dubowitz, the CEO of the hawkish think-tank “Foundation for Defense of Democracies” shamefully claimed that the people of not only Lebanon and Iraq, but also the people of Iran, are “actively demanding their countries back from the occupying Islamic Republic”. In other words, he claims that the Islamic Republic is occupying its own country. This is the level that they stoop to.

Yet some elements among the protestors in Iraq have been attacking and torching Iranian consulates. Why is that? How will torching the Iranian consulates in Najaf and Karbala save them from poverty and disenfranchisement? Who are these people, claiming that Iran is at fault for Iraq’s misery? Have they suffered from a memory loss over what has happened these past 16 years? Who sanctioned Iraq, resulting in the death of half a million Iraqi children? Who claimed that it was all worth it on national TV? Who invaded Iraq and humiliated the country, occupied it for 8 years and stole their resources? Who dropped depleted uranium on Iraqi cities, causing children even today to be born disfigured and mutated? Who unleashed Daesh on Iraq? And most importantly, who stepped in immediately to save Iraq when Washington’s dogs were at the gates of Baghdad in the summer of 2014? It is here that it becomes clear that the Saudis and Americans are directing these thugs to attack Iran inside Iraq. Fortunately, in Iraq they have been exposed as well. The Iraqi Foreign Ministry condemned the incident in strongest terms, saying the attack had been perpetrated “by strangers … distant from the reality of demonstrations taking place in a number of Iraqi cities.”

“We believe that its purpose is clear; to harm the historical relations between Iraq and Iran and countries of the world whose missions are in Iraq,” it said in a statement.

The ministry further warned against “the entry of persons who want to divert the demonstrations with the right demands from the seriousness of legal discipline and its proper course. The consulate in Najaf has been exposed to clear evidence of their agendas that are distant from the national demands; we stress the need to secure missions and not to expose those working in them.”
Iraq’s top cleric Grand Ayatollah Ali Al-Sistani has warned that enemies of Iraq and affiliated groups in the country are plotting to create internal strife and bring the country back to the “era of dictatorship”, an apparent reference to the former rule of Saddam Hussein.

Addressing worshippers during Friday prayers in the holy city of Karbala, the Grand Ayatollah urged protesters to prevent attacks on people and their property and distance themselves from those committing such acts.

“It is imperative on peaceful demonstrators that they separate their ranks from non-peaceful individuals and cooperate on shunning saboteurs – whoever they are – and not allow them to abuse peaceful protests to damage and attack the property of citizens,” a representative of Ayatollah Sistani said as he delivered the top cleric’s sermon.
“The enemies and their levers, in order to achieve their malicious goals, plan to spread chaos and plunge the country into internal strife and then return it to dictatorship, so everyone must work together to take away this opportunity from them,” he added.
A few months ago, the Lebanese Arabic-language daily newspaper al-Akhbar reported that Iraqi security sources have uncovered a plan seeking to install a military strongman favoured by the US by creating a power vacuum in the country.

The clear pattern seen in both Lebanon and Iraq is that this major plot is targeting the Islamic Republic.
Iran defeated the mainstream international community when it helped prevent the fall of the government in Damascus after years of war. It has effectively supported Hezbollah and the Palestinians against Israel, it has stood by Iraq and prevented terrorism from fully taking control of the country. Iran has also supported the defence of Yemen against Saudi Arabia’s pathetic and criminal war. These moves have created a lot of enemies for Iran, and they are all hell-bent on revenge for years of humiliation and failure.

This is the most important hour for the Resistance Axis, it must survive this plot, otherwise the entire region will burn and fall into Zionist hands.

The Explosion in Lebanon Has Been Delayed: Until When?

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By Elijah J. Magnier: @ejmalrai

Europe is concerned about the Lebanese political crisis and its potential spillover consequences in case of a civil confrontation. Even if the European states do not have differing strategic objectives in Lebanon from the US, a civil war will affect Europe directly, as refugees will be flocking from the neighbouring continent.

Reaching an agreement over a new government to prevent further unrest is proving difficult. Sources in Beirut believe it may take several months to form a new government, as was the case in forming the last government. Some wonder if it might not be better to wait for the results of the US elections before forming a new government. Or perhaps a new government will only emerge after a major security event, like the assassination of the late Prime Minister Rafic Hariri which triggered a political tsunami in the country. All indications on the ground point to the prospect of a civilian confrontation arising from the absence of a robust central government that can take in hand the security of the country. Can Lebanon avoid a civil confrontation?

The closure of the main roads and the “deliberate” incompetence and inaction of the security forces – due to US requests to tolerate the closure of main axes linking Lebanon with the capital – is no longer a surprising behaviour.

The main roads now closed have been carefully selected: closed are the roads linking the south of Lebanon to Beirut and linking Baalbek and the road to Damascus with the capital Beirut. These areas are mainly inhabited and used by Shia. The roads are being blocked mainly in certain sectarian areas controlled by Sunni supporters of the caretaker Sunni Prime Minister Saad Hariri and his Druse ally Walid Joumblat. The closure of other roads in the Christian dominated Dbayeh by the pro-US Christian leader Samir Geagea, leader of the “Lebanese Forces”, and in Tripoli seem to be kind of diversions of attention from the main goal: challenging Hezbollah.

Sources in Beirut believe the objective is to exasperate the Shia who represent the society that protects Hezbollah. The goal is to force the organisation into the streets. Hezbollah is aware of this and is trying to avoid responding to provocations. The closure of these roads is an invitation to Hezbollah to take the situation in hand and direct its weapon against other Lebanese citizens, as indeed happened on the 5th of May 2008.

In 2008, Druse minister Marwan Hamadé – directed by Walid Joumblat – and pro-US Prime Minister Fouad Siniora asked Hezbollah to cut its fibreoptic private communication system linking all corners of the country. Israel never ceased to monitor the Hezbollah cable that, due to its high-security system and regular control, had managed to neutralise all Israeli tapping devices attached to it by Israeli Special forces during their infiltration to Lebanon for this exact purpose. An effort was made by the Lebanese government in May 2008 to cut the cable to break through Hezbollah’s high-security system, the key to its command and control in time of peace and especially in time of war. This insistent attempt – despite repeated warnings – provoked two days later a demonstration of force by Hezbollah occupying the entire capital in a few hours with no serious victims. Lebanese pro-US armed mercenaries who gathered and hid in Beirut to trigger a civil war on this day, anticipating Hezbollah’s possible reaction, were neutralised in no time despite hundreds of millions of dollars spent on their supposed readiness for war against Hezbollah in the streets of Beirut.

Today, the goal is to see Hezbollah controlling the streets and arming anti-government Syrians and Lebanese. The goal is to take the Lebanon issue to the United Nations so as to justify a foreign intervention. The aim is not to see Hezbollah defeated by the initial clashes; the firepower, training and military organisation of Hezbollah cannot be defeated by enthusiastic mercenaries and locals. The aim is to deprive Hezbollah of its legitimacy and pay a heavy price for its “unforgivable” victories in Syria and Iraq and its support to the Palestinians and the Yemeni.

Lebanon’s financial problems are not the primary issue. In Congressional testimony, the former US Under Secretary of State and Ambassador to Lebanon, Jeffery Feltman, told the US Congress that “Lebanon’s entire external debt (around $35 billion) is in line with the estimates of what Saudi Arabia is bleeding every year in pursuing a war in Yemen ($25-$40 billion).”

Regional and international financial support to Lebanon will be injected with one purpose: to trigger a civil war in the hope of defeating Hezbollah in the long term. This might also save Israel from a severe political crisis by provoking a war against Lebanon rather than an internal conflict among Israelis, as seems possible after two failed attempts to form a government.

Most Lebanese are aware of the sensitive and critical situation in the country. Most fear a civil war, particularly in view of the behaviour of the Lebanese Army and other security forces who are now standing idle and yet refusing to keep all roads open. These actions by the security forces are greatly contributing to the possibility of an internal conflict.

Sincere protestors with only a domestic agenda have managed to achieve miracles by crossing all sectarian boundaries and carrying one flag: an end to corruption and associated poverty and the return of stolen capital to Lebanon. Protestors are asking the judiciary system to assume its responsibility and for the country to head towards a secular ruling system. But sectarian elements and foreign intervention are managing to divert attention from the real national demands that have been overwhelming the Lebanese since decades.

The foreign intervention is not relying on the justified demands of protestors in its confrontation with Hezbollah. It is relying on sectarian Lebanese who want to contribute to the fall of Hezbollah from the inside. This is not surprising because Lebanon is a platform where the US, EU, and Saudis are strongly present and active against the Axis of Resistance led by Iran. The Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) commander Hussein Salame warned in his most recent speech that these countries risk “crossing the line”.

Since the “Islamic Revolution” in 1979 Iran has not initiated a military or preventive war on its neighbours, but has limited its action to defending itself and in building its “Axis of Resistance”. Recently, Iran proposed – to no avail – a HOPE (Hormuz Peace Endeavor) to its neighbours, seeking a commitment to the security of the Middle East separately from any US intervention.

Iran defeated the mainstream international community when it helped prevent the fall of the government in Damascus after years of war. It has effectively supported Hezbollah and the Palestinians against Israel, favoured ally of the US; Iran stood next to Iraq and prevented a hostile government reaching power; Iran has also supported the defence of Yemen against Saudi Arabia’s useless and destructive war. Iran’s enemies are numerous and have not given up. They tried but failed to achieve their objectives in 2006 in Lebanon, in 2011 in Syria, in 2014 in Iraq and in 2015 in Yemen. Today a new approach is being implemented to defeat Iran’s allies: the weaponization of domestic unrests, motivated by legitimate anti-corruption demands for reform, at the cost of “incinerating” entire countries, i.e. Lebanon and Iraq.

Protestors have failed to offer a feasible plan themselves and caretaker Prime Minister Hariri is trying to punch above his parliamentary weight by seeking to remove political opponents who control more than half of the parliament. Lebanon has reached a crossroads where an exchange of fire is no longer excluded. The conflict has already claimed lives. Thanks to manipulation, Lebanon seems to be headed towards self-destruction.

Proofread by C.G.B and Maurice Brasher

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Copyright ©  https://ejmagnier.com, 2019

3 Lebanese Maronites: an exile, a warlord and the ‘Arab Nelson Mandela’

Monday, 25 November 2019 1:26 PM  [ Last Update: Monday, 25 November 2019 1:33 PM ]
US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)

Lebanese President Michel Aoun (C), Speaker of the Parliament Nabih Berri (L) and Prime Minister Saad Hariri attend a ceremony marking the 74th anniversary of the founding of Lebanese Armed Forces at the military academy in Beirut, Lebanon, on 1 August 2019. (Via Presidency of Lebanon)

By Ramin Mazaheri

Tale of 3 Maronites: an exile, a warlord and the ‘Arab Nelson Mandela’

(Ramin Mazaheri is the chief correspondent in Paris for Press TV and has lived in France since 2009. He has been a daily newspaper reporter in the US, and has reported from Iran, Cuba, Egypt, Tunisia, South Korea and elsewhere. He is the author of the books ‘I’ll Ruin Everything You Are: Ending Western Propaganda on Red China’ and the upcoming ‘Socialism’s Ignored Success: Iranian Islamic Socialism’.)

 

In a recent column I debunked the West’s primary propaganda lines regarding Lebanon’s ongoing protests: that Iran has somehow silently usurped a century of French colonial dominance, and that Lebanese Shia – represented by Hezbollah and Amal – should be held responsible for the nation’s corruption woes despite having always been the biggest victims of the French-penned system of anti-democratic sectarianism.

In another column I stated what all Lebanese know but which the West never admits: the Maronite Christian community has been given preferential treatment for a century – regarding the army, the central bank, and Western media tolerance for their militias – and this has been the primary catalyst for neo-colonial corruption, inequality and inefficiency.

This article will continue to insist that Lebanon’s problem is not Christian nor Muslim but a question of classic right-versus-left political ideologies. This reality is illustrated in the very unequal fates of three Lebanese Maronite Christians: Michel Aoun, Samir Geagea and Georges Ibrahim Abdullah.

Michel Aoun – the real, but bygone, patriotism of ‘petit de Gaulle’

To many people Michel Aoun is likely the only recognizable name among the three. However, many would still be at pains to explain why the right-wing Christian has had a political alliance with Hezbollah since 2006.

Despite all his faults, we cannot say that Aoun is not a Lebanese patriot. He chose exile rather than acceptance of the US-backed peace plan in 1991, which saw Syria occupy and finally pacify Lebanon.

Was Aoun also wanted for war crimes and corruption charges? Yes. Was he also defeated militarily by Syria? Yes.

However, we should acknowledge that Aoun’s mutiny against Washington was exceptional. Aoun exiled himself to France because he would not accept a violation of Lebanon’s sovereignty. This decision helps explain his enduring popularity: “petit de Gaulle” is more appropriate than “Napol-Aoun”, though the latter is more popular recently.

Aoun has openly declared Hezbollah to be part of Lebanon, and it’s easy to see why he appreciates them: Hezbollah has defended Lebanese sovereignty from arch-reactionary and hyper-belligerent Israel. The alliance between Aoun and Hezbollah is understandable – both are patriotic.

It’s facile to say that the Aoun-Hezbollah March 8 Alliance is “pure politics”, because the reality is that neither group would degrade themselves morally and ideologically in a “pure politics” alliance with the divisive extreme-right Christian parties, as the Hariris have done with their March 14 Alliance.

It is only if we believe the sectarian-promoting, identity politics-obsessed Western press that we could imagine that total enmity between Hezbollah and Aounists must exist simply because they are of different religions. Both Aoun and Hezbollah oppose the corrupt Hariri clan, who are adored by Western neoliberals and Saudi reactionaries alike.

However, when viewing the anti-corruption protests of 2019 it is important to remember the political reality that many young Lebanese believe Aoun is beyond redemption – they will not look past Aoun’s Phalangist past, war crimes, corruption, and ardent neoliberalism. Such a view is very understandable: patriotism is not the ultimate virtue, contrary to the assertions of the conservative Aounists.

Aounism’s determined, yet flawed, form of patriotism is dying also because many young Lebanese have been hypnotized by the West’s “globalization” mindset. In this view “jingoism”, “nationalism” and “patriotism” are interchangeable, even though the latter is the admirable, unique and even necessary love and respect one has for their national community. Such a worldview is personified by French leader Emmanuel Macron, who repeatedly states that, “Nationalism is war.” For many young Lebanese Aoun’s patriotic virtues are totally lost on them.

Aoun is now reportedly asleep 12 hours a day and incapable of playing a direct role anymore – his worldview is equally tired, and will not endure because the Great Recession has accentuated classism and not his “semi-sectarian patriotism”.

However, I have related why Aoun does deserve some appreciation. His patriotic bonafides are strengthened by the fact that the most divisive and bloody battles were between Aoun and the rabid sectarian Samir Geagea.

Samir Geagea – freed, despite his crimes, because he has the wrong friends

I expected online commenters to object to my treatment of Aoun in my previous two articles. I did not expect anyone to publicly stand up for Samir Geagea – no one did. His supporters are the types who leave anonymous, racist, ill-informed comments.

Bombing churches, assassinations of Christian leaders, fighting alongside Israeli Defense Forces – his crimes were the most atrocious of his era, and he was the only warlord to serve jail time for that reason.

And yet he was released. (This is obviously in contrast to the ‘Arab Nelson Mandela’.)

Geagea may have been released to avoid national disunity, but his return to political prominence was no doubt aided by the fact that he worked for the “right” (far-right, in fact) people – the Israelis, French and Americans. From Ukrainian neo-Nazis to Al-Nusra to Bolivian Christian fascists and beyond the West is happy to work with religious fanatics who seek to subvert national unity and morality.

Image result for Geagea, Riad Salameh,Geagea’s primary ally is Lebanon’s top central banker, Riad Salameh, who for three decades has allowed Lebanese inequality to explode, its corruption to proliferate and who also unjustly serves Washington’s blockade on Hezbollah.

Crucially, Geagea’s divisive politics totally contradict any idea that he is reformed or repentant. That his party was the first to pull out of the government when protests started only fuelled speculation that any foreign-dominated “color revolution” will surely utilize Geagea.

You can find Western mainstream media releases which try to whitewash his crimes, but the West generally prefers to keep quiet about him. To many Lebanese Geagea is just a thug, the “biggest crook of them all”, and not worth my time, but he is critical to understanding Western influence and modern Western ideology in today’s Lebanon.

The West’s treatment, leniency and open support of the Maronite Geagea is far different from how they view another Maronite, Georges Ibrahim Abdallah.

Image result for georges ibrahim abdallah

Georges Ibrahim Abdallah – the man beyond reproach, and thus the most feared by the US and Israel

Abdallah is Europe’s longest-serving political prisoner, at 35 years and counting, and is known as the “Arab World’s Nelson Mandela”.

Every October there are protests in front of his prison in southwestern France, and PressTV is usually the only media covering the anniversary. That is a sad commentary on my French journalist colleagues, indeed.

In 1982, with Israel invading Lebanon yet again, Abdallah’s group took responsibility for the death of a US and an Israeli agent in Paris.

Image result for geagea in canada

It is incredible that Geagea, whose militia killed thousands, goes free yet Abdallah remains in jail over the deaths of two.

Geagea has remained the head of the Lebanese Forces, obviously ready to re-warlord immediately. After 35 years Abdallah wants to go back to his job as a schoolteacher.

Why is the Maronite Abadallah seemingly going to serve a life sentence while the Maronite Geagea, the undoubted epitome of 1980s Lebanese carnage, got released? Clearly, the sectarian/identity analysis pushed so strongly by Israel, the US and France does not truly trump all.

The problem is that Abdallah had the “wrong” enemies – the US and Israel. Abdallah’s pro-Palestinian stance, as well as his socialist demand that the lower classes are more important than the 1% and central bankers, are why France’s leaders willingly collude to condemn Abdallah to death in prison.

Contrarily, Geagea obviously had the “right” enemies: anyone opposed to imperialism, ruthless capitalism, racist sectarianism and the idea that Palestinians deserve to be treated like humans. Who upholds these ideologies more than Israel and the US?

Georges Ibrahim Abdallah is indeed the Arab World’s Nelson Mandela because both were leftists who used violence in defense (not in attack) and because Abdallah has been imprisoned so long and so very unjustly. Without any doubt Abdallah, who has always refused to renounce his actions, has stood up for justice longer than any person in Europe today.

Geagea’s release and public rehabilitation show how Lebanon has granted amnesty to all their wartime leaders – only Abdallah does not walk free. French judges granted Abdallah parole long ago and he was ordered to be released multiple times, but France’s executive branch will seemingly always work on behalf of Washington and Tel Aviv.

The sad reality which must be changed is that the prominent parties in Lebanon are not pushing for Abdallah’s release.

Hezbollah and Amal simply do not have any leverage to put pressure on Paris, but they should immediately do all they could to draw more attention to Abdallah – they obviously support Abdallah’s fight against imperialism and injustice, and they are present at pro-Abdallah demonstrations in Lebanon. Making Abdallah a more prominent symbol would also help demonstrate to their shameless accusers that their ideology is not sectarian, but universal and moral.

The Maronite Church fought extremely hard to get Geagea released but have done nothing for Abdallah because of his pro-Palestine and pro-socialist stances – Hezbollah’s members need to fill their regrettable, shameful void.

Clearly, all of protest-wracked Lebanon needs Abdallah more than ever.

Lebanon’s protests are extremely Westernized in the sense that they have no class component – they rightly reject Aounist “semi-sectarian patriotism” as inadequate, but how could a movement based on patriotism galvanize a Lebanon that is no longer under occupation? Answers to what many young Lebanese are blindly groping against – an end to Salemeh-led inequality, French-led sectarianism and US-Israeli accommodation with imperialism – can be found personified by Georges Ibrahim Abdallah.

Image result for georges ibrahim abdallah

Abdallah is the man of this moment in Lebanon, yet he cannot be there to help.

But is this not the case for the anti-imperialist left in so many countries? Their leaders have been jailed or killed by Western nations. Don’t young Lebanese realize that they are no different?

Many believe that the only way to keep Abdallah from unjustly dying in prison is via a hostage exchange. Abdallah is undoubtedly a hostage held by France’s leaders, but I don’t know who could be exchanged for him in 2019?

Image result for georges ibrahim abdallah

Abdallah is also Europe’s oldest political prisoner and the hero of this article’s trio. His case disproves Western lies about “sectarian-religious conflict” in Lebanon, but also in Syria, Palestine, Iraq, Libya, Mali, the Central African Republic, Ukraine, Bolivia, Western China, etc.

When viewing Lebanon, actions and ideology are the only proper lenses, not religion. French neocolonialism, Israeli Zionism and Western anti-classism all reject this modern view.

The man who was the least “warlord” in Lebanon is still imprisoned precisely because he was the most patriotic, the least sectarian and the most enlightened politically. Does not his case represent the depth of “Lebanese corruption” in every sense?

Lebanon’s protesters need to realize that an incorruptible Lebanese has remained in prison on their nation’s behalf for 35 years.

Image result for Lebanon’s protesters

The time is now – nothing could represent a renewed, united, moral Lebanon better than the return, finally, of Georges Ibrahim Abdallah.

 

(The views expressed in this article do not necessarily reflect those of Press TV.)

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The Chinese Silk Road to Lebanon Blocked by US Allies

The Chinese Silk Road to Lebanon Blocked by US Allies

By Mona Issa

Beirut – That the political class in Lebanon profits off of the sectarian system is old news. Sectarianism poses as a blockade against class consciousness and solidarity, which in turn wades the necessary conditions for popular struggle against the power structure.

Lebanon was one of the earliest experiments for sectarianism by France and other imperial powers. While it suffers from corruption and sectarianism, it also suffers from accumulated financial burden. The economic basis of the country is founded on the fiscal terms of the old aristocrats, who are what we call the “international financial class” today. This class, according to the Economist, monopolizes 18 out of 20 of all major banks in Lebanon. However, the Lebanese banking sector is hardly ever Lebanese. Engineered and driven by IMF, neoliberal fiscal policy, and their Lebanese billionaire minister-proxies, the West bloc in the Lebanese parliament barely ever passed up an opportunity to benefit off of the sectarian nature of their workplace. What is good for the banks, is good for them – the imperialism business is a thriving one.

The international financial class – the Lebanese West bloc – which is inherently capitalist, then inherently imperialist, functions on finance and militarism, entailing that it functions on the oppression and abuse of human capital and conflict. In a post-colonial state like Lebanon, conflict just might be on its way with the right amount of mass manipulation, play on identity politics, and painful economic conditions. The latest painful imposition is the high dollarization rate, which struck as a shock to the already-collapsing economy in Lebanon. This ultimately weakens the country much further than it already is, instills financial fragility and draconian living expenses.

However, another narrative threatens US interests on the ground today. The escalating threat of Chinese influence to replace US power in the region makes America’s friends anxious. The recent economic war on China is based on this anxiety, that they could soon be proposing investments in countries plagued by colonial theft. For this reason, there has been increasing efforts to contain Chinese influence in the Middle East by the United States; the only thing blocking Lebanon from making trade with the East is the West bloc, which is one of the many ways the Lebanese parliament engages in self-defeating behavior. China, through the reconstruction initiatives in Syria, has offered substantial infrastructural deals to the Lebanese government. This year, they’ve offered not only to build a conservatory in Dbayeh, but also a railway which connects Beirut to Tripoli, Tripoli to Aleppo, then Aleppo to Damascus.  Historically speaking, any sort of connectivity in the Arab world let alone the country stands as a threat to sectarian profit. Such projects, furthermore, would jeopardize the WB’s relationship with Washington.

The same West bloc, namely Jumblatt, Hariri, Geagea – are making said profit from the protests. The consecutive resignation of Geagea and Hariri opens up the sectarian vein among the Lebanese who already are geopolitically divided, and fuels protesters to stay in the streets, calling for complete overthrow. They have been using their key positions to serve their superiors, while the people bathe in the illusion that Geagea and Hariri’s resignations were an overthrow.

The threat of civil conflict through sectarian strife and complete overthrow all push Hezbollah into a balancing act they could do without – they become torn between keeping the situation under control and succumbing to the pressures of the protesters and the international community. The protests have attained most of their legitimacy from the working class who today face an economic war as a result from suffocating neoliberal foreign policy instantiated by Hariri the father, whose legacy lives on into a nation sunken by billions of dollars in debt. However, it would only be naive and shortsighted to see that the economic crisis is merely a direct result of corruption. The plight of the working class comes from the direct and eventual effects of US foreign and economic policy. With the lethal combination of corruption and US ambition, the parliamentary West-bloc have managed to “blend in” with the protests, express solidarity with popular grievance, while serve as proxies for the US to drive Hezbollah into resignation and overthrow.

In parallel, Chinese influence has been kept at bay simultaneously keeping socialist ideological influence – such as those of Iran and Syria – marginalized and within limited power.

The world is witnessing a new political horizon; a post-post-Cold War, where US hegemony is challenged by other powers [not to mention also “illegitimate”, “terrorist” groups] and is very desperate.

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