Triple 8 , last contribute

January 30, 2014

Dear Reader,
Greetings and Good day,

While the negotiations in GENEVA are ongoing to determine the shape of the transition cabinet that will empower the Syrian state with reforms and just representation, it is unfortunate that in LEBANON efforts to form the cabinet are dragging indefinitely.
While my personal opinion is favoring without any doubt the neutral cabinet as per previous posts, I will contribute with the efforts trying to manage a deal based on a triple 8 formula or 12 / 12 as we wish to call it.
The principle is that we need to generate a mechanism of comprehensive inclusiveness, although this will require major efforts from all sides to balance and stabilize the future phase. We all know that what are expected are the presidential elections and the electoral law, to pave the way for general elections to take place, giving true voice to the population representation rather than the extended and non constitutional voice of the actual parliament.
Far from any polemic and having in mind only the desire to form a cabinet, it is paramount for all politicians to submit a written understanding to institute a sovereign fund for oil and gas and to liberalize the licenses for mobile suppliers up to at least 5 providers.
Whenever this will be respected then I am keen to propose the following as an open hand to the Lebanese corrupt politicians to wake up and finalize the craft of the long awaited cabinet.
Considering the basics of an equal share in the total number of ministers between Muslims and Christians and the necessity to safeguard the triple 8 formula, the key in my proposal is to create a collective design to reform the nation/state from within, or else through the country’s warring elite, incapable to guide the country without resorting to foreign allegiance.
As Mr. Allison from Belfer Center says, the perfect is enemy of the good, what I suggest is as follows, to honor the interim accord between Iran and the P5 +1:
the Lebanese triple 8 cabinet :
5 Sunni :PM Mr. Tammam Salam, minister for Interior nominated by the FUTURE movement , Economy and trade FUTURE movement , Justice Mrs Layla Solh Independent/female quota or Mr Adnan Qassar in case Mrs Solh is not available , Information minister will be of the PM quota,

3 Orthodox : Foreign Affairs Mr. Samir Mokbel President quota, Culture FUTURE quota, Deputy PM Marada Movement

5 Sciite : Health Mr. Ali Hassan Khalil AMAl , Agriculture Mr.Hussein Hajj Hassan Hezbollah,Finance Amal quota , Sports and Youth FUTURE Quota, Minister of State President quota

3 Catholics: Telecommunications Mr. Nicolas Sehnaoui , Labour PM quota , Education Future quota

4 Maronites :Mr. Gibran Basil Water and Energy,Defense Mr. Botros Harb, Tourism Mr. Sami Gemayel ,Public Works an engineer from ACHRAFIEH district ( Lebanese Forces).

2 Druze: Social Affairs Mr.Wael Abu Faour, Displaced Mr. Talal Arslan

1 Armenian :Industry Mr Vrej Sabounjian or another Taschnak nominee

1 minorities : minister of state President quota ( preferably female )

N.B. Only in case the PSP will insist on two Druze ministers, then the youth minister will go to Hezbollah, and the minorities will go to the Future, keeping the balance of 8,8,8 .
I apologize as in the first version of this post, this nota bene was not mentioned .

This cabinet will ensure benefits for everyone.
The president will have a wide role in the formation and will have a say on the foreign affairs in respect with the Baabda declaration.
The PM will have generated the cabinet long awaited based on a balance and check unprecedented.
Hezbollah will be happy as a cabinet is formed and efforts will concentrate on diplomacy and the way how to develop the new policy in the upcoming six years of a new Lebanese president.
The Future will have secured a very effective management of the entire process and will have demonstrated that it has a share with all communities, while waiting for the STL to pronounce its verdict and the Lebanese reforms to kick start.
The Free Patriotic Movement will have secured its basic requests, whenever there will be a commitment to the sovereign fund and the telecommunications licenses.

The Marada movement will be represented very well, and perhaps this will open horizons for Baabda one day.

The Progressive and Socialist Party although somehow penalized, will be the main intermediary, simply because this will project it to the role of king maker in the presidency and the electoral law, after a delusional role in the extension of the parliament.

The Amal movement will have access to the budget ministry, and this will be a first step in ensuring a sort of mind changes within the communities vis a’ vis their traditional allotments.

The March 14 movement will have an excellent representation and the Lebanese Forces will be urged to reconsider for the benefit of LEBANON the nation state.

Some big names will start jockeying for the presidency and here we declare the presidency’s candidacies open.

This contribute is my last ditch separating Lebanon from the neutral cabinet to be formed not later than 10 February, in case of failure of the triple 8.

I sincerely wish that the triple 8 cabinet will be announced not later than 7 February.

Thank you,

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Happy Prophet’s day in Beirut , Mr Zarif !

January 13, 2014

Dear Reader,

Greetings and Good Day,

“Patriotism may be strengthened by adherence to a national religion (a civil religion or even a theocracy). This is the opposite of the separation of church and state demanded by the Enlightenment thinkers who saw patriotism and faith as similar and opposed forces”. Wikipedia

It is extremely interesting to monitor the developments in the Middle East.
Much to observe if one starts from the promising evolution in the Iranian government policies, leaving behind the waste of Mr. Khamenei’s rule, and walking towards the scientific methodical approach of Mr. Rouhani, and his handling of the nuclear pride of Iran.
Passing by the Iraqi upcoming elections, the Syrian crisis, the Palestinian peace track, the Arab spring momentum and the Lebanese mosaic surrender to a corrupt elite; all events worth for a stop and a detour.
It is common sense to expect the Iranian administration of Mr. Rouhani to maneuver for the economic recovery, while assessing a new approach for the energy policies and the Iranian regional positive role, within a reasonable and pondered projection of a responsible influence and an objective say and/or a scientific might.
Mr. Rouhani will have a very bright future if he manages to supersede the waste of the revolution.
Two US luminaries recently indicated to Tehran the path in developing a stabilizing strategy by investing on nuclear reactors commercial technology, a national pride for Iran, similar to what South Korea or Argentina are already doing, rather than pursuing a costly and destabilizing nuclear threshold as per North Korean dangerous route leading to isolation and sanctions.
Sooner than later we will know Iranian intentions that go beyond ta’aruf and I am confident that modernism, openness and release of all political prisoners will replace rigidity and totalitarian imposition tout court.
In Iraq, Mr. Maliki is getting the result of his arrogance, by attacking the sit-in of Ramadi and by sidelining the Sunnis, expectations are that in April he will lose badly and a new prime minister will be installed to jockey between the US, other powers and Iran in order to qualify for a guarantor of differing interests.

The Israeli racist approach against its own Arab and African citizens is very bad, and it is coupled to the expansion of illegal settlements and the non reverence of orthodox Jews to the sacrosanct rights of the Palestinians.
The liberal Jewish soul is suffering so much to see Hebrews in Israel imposing on themselves fear from the rest, rather than the brother’s salute and embrace.
Israel will always try to divide in order to conquer, albeit its future resides in stabilizing an oasis of flourishing peace around it.
Perhaps oil is guiding its politics nowadays instead of a sane vicinity markets vision.
Where to start from? Is it from Egypt, Tunisia, Libya, South Sudan or Sudan itself? All these nations are going through enormous tension and rendering the regional complexity higher.
Hope is high that in Egypt the democratic process will gain its leeway after bloody events.

In Syria, I expect Geneva 2 to announce a cease fire and human corridors, while committees for security and politics will elaborate solutions indicated in my previous post, based on modernity of the state and the exclusion of Assad, inner circle, and family from the public posts.

Today will start the official visit of the Iranian FM who is already in Beirut (welcome Mr.Zarif) after the gathering of the friends of Syria yesterday in Paris, and I was reading a lot about constitutional boundaries as per Taef and the option of the neutral cabinet in Lebanon.
Where critics of the neutral cabinet fail, is when they omit to state, that the extended parliament leaks legitimacy and legality, if not lifted its constitutional veracity, by the constitutional council.
Which leads us to the fact, that a new president, elected by an extended parliament without veracity, is not constitutional unless the council will pronounce its own verdict.
Hence the entire political process is shaking from a constitutional standing.
So in order to move forward, I think it is much reasonable in respect of the citizenry, to form a neutral cabinet, in respect of coexistence and the national framework; although recent openings for a triple 8 cabinet are to be invested in the follow up of the coming months.
From here I see in Lebanon some upcoming phases, the neutral cabinet of 10, the extension of legitimacy to the parliament, the STL coupled to the election of Mr. Joseph Tarabey as president and a new electoral law (that I will develop its electoral mix shortly).
This will be followed by the general elections by end of May.
Whoever wins the general elections, the cabinet that follows will be of national unity, based on 30 ministers, for a duration of two years maximum, and it will introduce major fiscal, investment, startup, economic , military reforms and implement the meeting of Taef 2 dedicated for some constitutional adjustments consisting of a rotation between Sunnis and Shiites in the posts of speaker and pm and also the extension of the presidential right to call for general elections, together to the institution of a Lebanese sovereign fund for oil and gas.
A new era of regional cooperation will start and 2 brokers will emerge as poles of economic prowess: KSA and Iran, having reinvigorated mutual ties and achieved their internal reforms based on pluralism and economic diversification.
Common sense is to form a neutral cabinet in Lebanon, (not as per president Suleiman desire but as the Lebanese/global interests) , that will pave the way for elections, for an effective unity cabinet to accompany the STL, the reforms, the Iranian scientific enhancement, and Syrian Geneva 2 and 3 leading to establish the rights of the people.

Ultimately we all want to stabilize and to strengthen the Lebanese institutions and to find the peaceful way to adorn the middle east with an umbrella of illuminated stability, that will enable the US to dedicate more resources to ensure a very limited frictional rise of china, in a more peaceful world.

The Lebanese task is to include the political representation of Hezbollah in the regional formula, while finding the way for the military wing to be absorbed by the army, in a contour where Iranian funding for armaments and training and other related aspects of Hezbollah military activities must stop, as this is a flagrant interference in Lebanese affairs, dear Mr.Zarif.
As for those who will be condemned by the STL they will pay on a separate track, after they will be uncovered and detained.
Hezbollah will require a pause of reflection and a lightening of its heavy weights, a self critique is healthy (Mr. Hassan Nasrallah will excuse me for asking him to take a break and seriously reflect).

To end I say that the Lebanese elite which is famous for losing every geopolitical opportunity, is for once requested to operate wisely and form the neutral cabinet without any further delay.
The neutral cabinet will be followed by the president election and by the unity cabinet to be formed after the general elections in May.
Taef 2 will be held and comprehensive reforms will be approved.

Hezbollah must know that the neutral cabinet is not a ruse against the Sciite mainstream, but a tool for Lebanese modernity in tandem with global interests.
And ultimately in view of the rapprochement in act in the region, the approach of confrontation will be replaced by negotiations, hence words and policies will reveal more potent than all missiles and promised surprises.
Moving forward in the Middle East will be tortuous, yet with much patience and dedication, policy makers can avoid clashes and nurture a better future for aspiring generations and families.
Whenever the corrupt elite, will come with a better plan, then chapeau for the sake of Lebanon, but I doubt vehemently they have good ideas.

May the Lebanese hear and act and may the web of president Rouhani grow ever larger to embrace science, political prisoners and pluralism.

“The scientific method is a body of techniques for investigating phenomena, acquiring new knowledge, or correcting and integrating previous knowledge. To be termed scientific, a method of inquiry must be based on empirical and measurable evidence subject to specific principles of reasoning.” Wikipedia

Thank you.


The Lady in Black

January 9, 2014

Dear Reader,

Greetings and Good Day,

“The Special Tribunal for Lebanon is a tribunal of international character. The STL was inaugurated on 1 March 2009 and has four organs: Chambers, the Office of the Prosecutor, the Defence Office and Registry.” http://www.stl-tsl.org/

It is no secret that in less than ten days the Special Tribunal for Lebanon will open its audiences and this per se’ will be an important development.
It is no secret also that the Iranian foreign minister will visit Beirut next Monday, and it is thought that this visit will facilitate the formation of the cabinet. In the last two days a useless effort to revive old formulas was brought forward by the Lebanese princes of corruption, unaware that the Lebanese closet is in dire need of exceptional constitutional and national reforms.
My conviction is that the neutral cabinet of ten ministers is the only option, where I detailed in my previous post how it can be formed. Whenever the PSP will not take part in it, then the social affairs ministry can be assigned to Major General Shawki Al Masri, who will represent together to General Ibrahim as Foreign minister, the Lebanese state at GENEVA 2 conference.
The soonest the best, hence I do recommend that the new cabinet will be announced before the arrival of the Iranian FM to Beirut.
General Qasem Suleimani of the QUDS Force, who is a great tactician, will undoubtedly have noticed that the first supreme leader accepted the truce with Iraq, and this brought Mr. Rafsanjani as president, and the II supreme leader accepted the truce with the US and this brought Mr Rouhani (an expert in deals since the Iran contras affair) as president.
Mr Suleimani should realize by now that all his efforts were exploited by politics and this makes him very expendable.
Therefore his strategy to maintain a failed regime in Syria, and to nurture a deviated organization as Hezbollah in Lebanon, is based on erroneous fundamentals.
As I consider Mr. Suleimani an intelligent warrior, I recommend he shifts his career to politics and achieves the peace of the brave with his foes, following the vision of creating a free WMD zone in the ME.
This will bring us to the dilemma facing the Russian and American Foreign ministers, during their planned meeting mid January, related to the Syrian opposition participation in Geneva 2 and the implementation of the CW disarmament by the July deadline.
The record of the Syrian president dictatorship is obvious during his tenure, and his efforts to trade the CW disarmament for a prolonging of his mandate, as much as the extension of oil exploration rights to the Russians will lead nowhere.
The US and Russia can ask the UN to extend a last minute invitation to Iran, to attend Geneva 2. By itself when the Iranian delegation will show, it is a tacit acceptance of the course in act, where a precedent communiqué’ will be the departing base to move forward.
As for the opposition, I propose a unifying approach where its chair will be empty during the works with only a flower dedicated to all victims. As for the speech of the opposition it can be pronounced by actress Vanessa Redgrave sponsored by the young mother of the British throne, and dressed in an all black including accessories. Whenever Mrs. Redgrave is not available then perhaps actress Debra Winger can read the text. In both cases “The Lady in Black” will talk on behalf all refugees, a tragedy we know very well in Lebanon.
This Syrian modern allegory is the tragedy of our era, where physical damage and harm to the inner persona of the Syrians will not alter their nature of peace and coexistence.
In Greek mythology, Cassandra was raped, and the rape of the Syrian soul must stop.
The Syrian opposition will affirm its adherence to the communiqué,’ in seeking a peaceful transition, a new state; aware of the mosaic social tissue, composing the Syrian collectivity and the inevitable destiny to unite all resources to create a modern state.
Two proposals will be introduced by Mrs. Redgrave on behalf of the Syrian population and these are, 1) the introduction of a free trade zone in the north east and an autonomous region in the southwest, 2) the introduction of the senate as a second legislative chamber and the revision of powers of both the president and the prime minister.
In the specifics the opposition will accept a transitional cabinet of 26 as follows: 4 ministers to the Alawites/Baath nominated by the Assad clan including the defense ministry, 4 ministers to the Kurds including the agriculture and Hydro resources, 3 ministers to the Druze including economy and culture, 3 ministers to the Christians including education, 12 ministers to the Arab Sunnis including general security and finance. The opposition umbrella will account for at least 16 ministers.
The transition will lead to a new constitution, a new electoral law, to local elections and general elections. Ultimately a Syrian president will be elected for a mandate of 4 years and it can’t be renewed.
On a regional level the opposition will stress the importance of peace with Israel where the sacrosanct and inalienable rights of the Palestinian people will be respected in a soon to be declared viable Palestine within interim boundaries.
Lebanese Hezbollah will eventually realize that all missiles in their stocks can’t defend Lebanon or the cause of Palestine, as much as a growth of the Arab youth based on security and prosperity for all including Iran and Israel.

“The establishment of a transitional governing body which can establish a neutral environment in which the transition can take place. That means that the transitional governing body would exercise full executive powers. It could include members of the present government and the opposition and other groups and shall be formed on the basis of mutual consent”. Action Group for Syria, Final Communiqué , 30.06.2012

Thank You,


The new cabinet of lebanon

January 3, 2014

Dear Reader,
Greetings and Good Day,

“With their mistake, I buy mistakes, from their disheartening words, I suffer;
Blood spurts out of my wound, how can I dry the water?” The Boat, Nimā Yushij , نیما یوشیج

In an objective analysis related to the achievements of the Ahmadinejad presidency,
we can easily realize that poverty raised in Iran as much as the national GNP dropped
drastically.
Radicalism in Iran represented by the government of the Revolution Guards and the
populist Ahmadinejad can be referred to as an immense waste.
Looking also to the political ramifications of the late Iranian projection of power,
we can heartedly be touched by the huge waste, when we look at major errors committed by
the Iraqi PM Nouri Maliki. And by the Syrian Bashar Assad who miserably failed to advance
his nation into the road of modernity.
The crossroad of all this mismanagement is definitely best represented in the Lebanese Hezbollah
which altered the Israeli withdrawal of 2000 and the Israeli failure in 2006, into a waste of the gains,
by pointing the rifle north and extending the lines of supply from 80 km to 500 km.
Lebanon is threatened to become a hell of fire and theater of internal strife.
It is well known that accountability can’t be applied extensively in the Middle East,
because of arrogance and corruption, but can at least merit be visible and emerge?
Meritocracy is one of the guidelines and principles that must set the formation boundaries
of the new Lebanese cabinet. Two personalities are to be mentioned and these are Minister
Marwan Charbel and General Abbas Ibrahim of the General Security.
Whenever meritocracy is one guideline of the new cabinet, then the rest can be a focus
on the short duration, the number of ministers and the possible achievements.
It is known that the new cabinet will be in place until the election of the new president.
However, both issues are not intertwined formally, in the sense that a grand bargain will pave
the way for the cabinet.
Definitely not, and this is why the talk about a cabinet made out from the national dialogue committee
is not reasonable nor possible.
Here the chances of President Amin Gemayel, General Aoun, Mr Sleiman Franjieh and
Dr Geagea to be elected are very finite and slim if not impossible. Let them rest their
divisive efforts and cooperate for once.
So the equation in the new cabinet is the number of ministers and the more we have, the complexity
will be higher, therefore the perfect number is ten.
Considering 2 shiite , 2 sunni, and one druze, 2 maronite, one catholic, one orthodox and one Armenian.
The second equation is that the new cabinet will require paving the way for a second TAEF,
to adjust the harmony of the national cohesion and to impede any destruction of the Lebanese
coexistence.This is not because Taef 1 is wrong, but because we will insert few clauses to make it
acceptable by everyone.
As we know there are 4 major issues upcoming, the Geneva 2, the nuclear file of Iran,
the Israeli Palestinian talks, and the tribunal for Lebanon.
The proposal for the new cabinet of Lebanon can consist of two options,
one I already wrote about on this blog some time ago, made out of 10 ministers and formed
mainly by entrepreneurs, and the second who is more consequential is as follows:
Mr Tammam Salam PM ( economy, information, justice), Mr Adnan Kassar ( Finance minister, Culture),
General Ibrahim ( sanity, labour, foreign affairs, agriculture), General Charbel (Interior),
Mr Hussein Husseini (relations with the parliament, environment) ,
Mr Samir Moukbel ( deputy pm, defense, justice, communication ),
Mr Nazim Khoury ( tourism , public works), Mr Wael Abou Faour
( social affairs, education, sports), Mr Abraham Dedeyan ( Industry),
Mr Joe Takla ( energy, displaced).

This combination is very balanced and the second step will be to submit to the parliament the
program, and here I recommend that, to the declaration of Baabda a phrase shall be added.
Where the sanctuary of the state will be defended to consolidate coexistence and amalgam all the
Lebanese strata by any form, even through unconventional popular methods based on resistance
where the state reputes necessary.
This will lead us to the vote and chances are very strong that it will be voted, especially
if we consider that there is a precedent where the socialist party gave freedom to vote
during Mr Kamal Jumblat positioning in the early seventies.
With the calculated approach of the new cabinet ( articles debating the constitutional framework of
the formation abound, yet thinkers and writers fail to give the appropriate solution, for the emergency
Lebanon is witnessing) all players will be oriented to the new president election including the
Iranian excellent mediator Rouhani.
There are only two names with chances to be elected Lebanese president and these are
Mr Joseph Tarabey and General Jean Kahwaji.
My preference goes to Tarabey because Lebanon will need to go on Taef 2 (rotation between Pm and speaker and reinforcement for the president powers by calling on early general elections, plus the introduction of the referenda institution).
Taef 2 will have excellent effects on relations between Iran and KSA and it will mean the true
transfer of all files from the IRGC to the administration of president Rouhani.

“Nadda was by the water spring, and I asked her why she was not around, she looked at me with
those eyes, and she wanted to talk to me but she did not want to, o’Naddaa”
O Naddaa Lebanese song, by Sabah, lyrics Mansour Rahbani , Music Assi Rahbani

Thank You,