Wisdom .. Mostly Needed in Lebanese Crisis

  • 10 April 2008

Wisdom and respect for constitutional institutions and promotion of supreme national interests above factionalism and narrow sectarianism is a prerequisite for sorting out many of the crises faced by the Arab region—be it in Lebanon, the Palestinian Territories, and Iraq. In this context, the call made by the UAE President, His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan (May God protect him) to the Lebanese factions is highly significant. On meeting Lebanese Prime Minister Fouad Siniora, during the latter’s recent visit to Abu Dhabi, His Highness called upon Lebanese factions to tackle the interest of their country, and resolve the current political crisis wisely, as well as strengthen the role of constitutional institutions.

At this historic juncture, Lebanon needs to give priority to wisdom in dealing with differences between various political forces, because it would lead to overcoming many obstacles that impede a compromise, and exacerbate the continuing divisions. These obstacles could pose a significant risk for the Lebanese state and its people, and merely cater to a particular community or a particular political faction.

Respect for the role of constitutional institutions is important for addressing the political crisis in Lebanon, because to rehabilitate these institutions all parties would have to work sincerely and effectively in order to overcome the existing presidential vacuum—a situation that would complete a year—if things continue in the current manner and the tenure of the parliamentary term elapses. In spite of the severity of differences within Lebanon, its constitutional foundations determine its political system. Thus, there is a need to revive the constitution by everyone in good faith. This is not difficult or impossible task, if only there is a collective will among the feuding forces to raise the interest of Lebanon above vested and narrow interests. 

In spite of all the complexities linked to the political crisis in Lebanon that has stagnated for a long time, compromise is still possible. If the external influence is cleared, the internal dimension would become most important in determining in the coming period. Everyone should respond to sincere calls for wisdom and recognize that an explosive situation is in nobody’s interest, and that the challenges are the ones affecting "Lebanon," which needs to be internally strong, and devoid of dissensions and division.