Friday, May 05, 2006

A Plate Full of News

What can I say: in less than one day, we get a lot of news ground to cover.

Two prominent legislations were passed in Parliament yesterday, in a successful show of the parliamentary majority's clout, one was a law that organizes the affairs of the Druze community and the other bill was on "rescusitating" the role of the Constitutional Council.

We must give credit where credit is due: the fact that Aoun's bloc attended the parliamentary session shows that the bloc's MPs believe in participating in the process of political deliberation which is a right and a duty given to MPs by the people, despite Aoun's absence and their rejection of passing these two laws. And the same goes for Amal's bloc. Such move comes in contrast with Hizbullah's bloc which did not attend at all.

However, on Tayyar's website a headline reads as follows: The Parliamentary Majority Won the "Laws" Battle Over the Carcass of Consensual Democracy ('الأكثرية' ربحت معركة القانونين على جثة الديمقراطية التوافقية ) in a show of solidarity with President Lahoud's rejection of the two laws as requiring consensus agreement in the Parliament and not majority rule. FPM is indeed confusing. I thought Aoun is all about majority rules and talks numbers and poll results (70%, etc.) Plus, it is in the Parliament's bylaws that decisions are reached by majority vote.

On another point, Al-Nahar daily published a piece by Ibrahim Bayram which provided insider information on the four rounds of talks between Hariri-Nasrallah. Bayram revealed that Hariri proposed Nasib Lahoud as a presidential candidate; however Nasrallah voiced his disapproval of any candidate affiliated to the March 14 spirit, even though Nassib is a former MP and holds no political role, like that of Butros Harb or Nayla Moawwad, which represents the March 14 coalition.

And for those criticizing PM Seniora for his "accomodationist" stands, yesterday he asked Hizbullah, in response to Nasrallah's fiery speech which rendered the Syrian berms on the Bekaa border as a fabrication, "What does it matter if the berms were erected 5 years ago or five days ago? Isn't this Lebanese territory?"

Further, Geagea escalated the discourse on LBC's Kalam Innass by saying , "Yes, we are calling for Hizbullah's disarmament. Are we insulting someone's faith by saying that?"

And finally, Fortune magazine released an article with an in-depth investigation of the Madina Bank scandal. The article proposes that the late Hariri was assassinated before he was able to reveal the scandal implicating President Lahoud and his family, Syrian President Assad and his family, and tens of other influential intelligence officers.

Analysis of these news items will follow suit.

"Nobody knows how many rebellions, besides political rebellions, ferment in the masses of life which people earth."


JoseyWales said...

Thanks for a good round-up Doha.

Re: Aoun-FPM statement: The law is the law. It is nice to have consensus but you can't be paralyzed without it. If MP's don't understand thelaw, it's very scary.

Re: Saniora's quip: "What does it matter if the berms were erected 5 years ago or five days ago? Isn't this Lebanese territory?"

Great. However, this is the kind of quip I expect from a fellow blogger (that's all we can do).

From the head of the government, I expect ACTION, God damn it.

Anonymous said...

I didn't follow the sheik Akl affair, but I assume that it's about the control of the Druze waqf?

Doha said...


I believe so. But as I understand from the articles I've read here and there, the sheikh al-akl has refused to step down, despite the appointment at one point of another sheikh to take over the position a couple of years back. As we know that Sheikh Ghaith is a supporter of the Syrian regime and does not have the support of many Druze.

Arslan in a press conference today called for revocation of the law.

I hope someone can flesh out this issue for us more.

ghassan said...

What I have found to be most troubling about the Sheikh Ghaith affair is everyones acceptance that it is the role of government to regulate religious institutions. We must accept the decisions of the government on this issue and any other one as long as they conform to legal statutes but we also have the obligation to challenge the government to either change or amend laws that are deemed to be intrusive.

A.M said...

That was a great sum up doha..I really am with you in your analysis.
We just want some action from the government to stop the syrian violation and give full security to the people who will contribute to the "almadina" investigation.
As for Lahoud, it's ok let him feel the "SLAP" for a while..u know look at it in the mirror how RED it is how it's turning a bit bluish..
u know if aoun wants what he wants i mean why would he go with hizballah and not 14 march? how is he looking at it? i mean they have no affect what so ever in the parliament. weird! anyways just don't bother go to anymore..its very aouncratic

Anonymous said...

Doha, with posts like these, who needs 'mainstream' media. Thank for a concise and timely report!

Regarding the discussion of the "Gaith" is almost offensive to be giving this issue any sort of attention when we have a multitude of life altering events taking place in our midst on a daily - an hourly rather- basis. Having said that, I do think it is regrettable for our elected officials to be wasting their time with this joke of an issue. Clearly, this whole thing represents a kickback to Mr. Walid J. Fine, let's just move on to more important issues..

So Thursday's vote, in my humble opinion, constitutes an extremely significant milestone. Its significance actually goes way beyond the actual laws passed (albeit it, the first one is very crucial).

Why? Just scroll down and read Raja's brilliant post: "Are the Hiwar sessions the beginning of the Lebanese Senate?"

PM Saniora and our elected majority must have read that very post, and must have been highly inspired (or threatened) by it. As a result, they decided to provide us with a swift, unequivocal answer..."No, it aint and we're still here!!" So "Raja" (whoever you may really be), congratulations. Last Monday, you single handedly prevented the annulment of the Lebanese democratic system. What are you up to today?