Friday, December 01, 2006

Detailed Description of Lebanon's Current Crisis

(I have just put up a post on my other - less active - blog, detailing the crisis in Lebanon today. Below is the first part of that post. If you would like to read more, please follow the link at the bottom to the second part of the post. Thanks!)
In every political system, there are effective checks and balances built in to preserve the rights of the people in the face of the rule of the executive branch. These checks and balances are embodied in the presence of a legislative and judicial branch. In Lebanon, these constitutional checks and balances are buttressed by a set of unwritten conventions aimed at preserving the delicate balance of power between the various sects.
By resigning from the cabinet, and therefore depriving the government of its Shiite representation, Hizballah and Amal have arguably placed the cabinet in direct violation of the unwritten rule specifying that all cabinets should include a proportional representation of all of Lebanon's sects at their formation. These resignations, timed to correspond to the government’s review and final approval of the draft bill on the creation of the International Tribunal, have plunged the country into a new crisis only 3 months after the end of the last crisis – also started by Hizballah, but which took the form of a large scale war – and several days before the continuation of yet another – that of the assassination of Lebanon’s anti-Syrian political figures.
In refusing to submit to the two parties’ minority-veto demand, the government has run the risk of a prolongation and escalation of the crisis in an already tense political atmosphere. Through this move, however, the government has effectively rejected the notion that the cabinet be turned into the venue for extra-parliamentary national dialogues, after having already allowed for two such sessions – embodied in the failed national dialogue talks (the first of which was aborted by Hizballah through the igniting of the July war) – to take place. In convening the failed national dialogue sessions, the government may have been buying time, but it was also setting dangerous precedents in allowing a sectarian-based national dialogue to take place outside of the only institution equipped with the calculated sectarian proportions our wanting Constitutional had accorded for such a dialogue, the Parliament. That, however, is exactly where this battle has already moved to, but more importantly, where it should be contained. Read More...

No comments:

Post a Comment

Powered by Blogger.