The Point Man – Female President

June 25, 2014

Dear Reader,
Greetings and Good Day,

“Strategy without tactics is the slowest route to Victory; Tactics without Strategy is the noise before defeat “Sun Tzu

It is no coincidence that the Iraqi Parliament will convene from July 1st to start the formation of a new government, and the nuclear talk’s new round is rescheduled for July 2nd.
Starting from the nuclear needs of Iran Dina Esfandiary and Ariane Tabatabai wrote an article recently http://thebulletin.org/meeting-irans-nuclear-fuel-supply-needs7224 , which is very interesting and leads us directly to the Iranian foreign policy and strategic set.
We know that there are presently 3 countries in waiting for governance and solutions, Iraq, Syria and Lebanon. Following the Iraqi elections a winner emerged in the person of an ineffective Prime Minister Mr. Maliki, and we are willing to evaluate the steps he will take when the parliament will kick start the legislative mandate and will require as per constitution to form a cabinet within a month.
Meanwhile a new capital is in the making Mosul, and unprecedented change in boundaries since a centennial is being implemented. Kurd leaders are willing to endorse the idea of a new Iraq, and world powers are unable to detect where the actual dynamics will lead.
In Syria the US/Russian/International cooperation led to end the threat of CW, yet the tragedy of the re-election of Assad on the western part of the country is another indicator of the Iranian stubborn attitude to exert projection of power, acting as a regional spoiler without the option of stability capability. Feeding Assad is a very useful strategy to drain the resources of Iran and its proxies.
In Lebanon there is in place a vacuum and a clear failure of Iran’s proxies to get their pawn elected as president, Michel Aoun.

“However beautiful the strategy, you should occasionally look at the results “Winston Churchill

Adding to the regional complexity, the nuclear difficulties, the sanctions, and the internal opposition, I can see the regime in Tehran much in need of a fresh air.
It is clear that the supreme leader and other revolution agencies are pulling the strings in Tehran, yet these guys are losing international ground.
The US should not only understand Iran’s concerns for nuclear fuel, but it also needs to put in place the reflection of the Iranian establishment’s failed regional model on the nuclear negotiations.
Sticking to realism, there is an opportunity to draft an upgrade to the joint plan of action where a very tiny ease on cash sanctions can be enlarged, in exchange for trust building measures. The six months time frame until January 2015 will be precious for both parties to reposition and gather momentum for further cooperation.
Ironically Qassem Suleimani is the Iranian point man for the Iranian model to be piloted, and paradoxically he is the same point man on who the US needs to invest to achieve the long term strategic vision of pipelines to replace missiles.
Definitely with the hydrocarbon resources in the Eastern Mediterranean, Iran will need to set priorities , and I presume that whenever Qassem will start somewhere in exerting his leadership, a compromise needs to be found in Lebanon by the election of a reformist female president (Nadine Moussa), not a pawn for Tehran.
Pipelines are the route for an enormous shift in International relations and the best opportunity for the state of Israel to generate an environment of cooperation and just peace with all its neighbors.

That said, a note of merit should be addressed to Vladimir Putin who publicly asked the DUMA to take out the option of military engagement in Ukraine.
Bravo Vladimir, he starts listening to the markets, and he needs to go a mile further instead of proceeding with his special war, he needs to help on Inter-Ukrainian dialogue, with the purpose to put in place in the two industrial separatist regions a compromise similar to TRENTINO – ALTO ADIGE in ITALY, an autonomous region with German spoken language having full rights. Afterwards he needs to create on the opposite side of the Russian border, a free trade Russian zone, with a revolving door / open boundaries mechanism similar to the one between France and Italy; this will enhance exchange and set the basics for a future partnership with Europe.
Furthermore having signed the gas agreement with China and after establishing a free zone between Ukraine/Russia, Vladimir can implement the strategy to diversify and re-position Russia into a new model (not only energy), hence a favorable legislative and investment environment will be in place to promote, start-ups for financial products, specialized industrial items for new sectors (aerospace, 3d, commercial drones, etc), charter wellness tourism etc.
Ultimately after the cooperation success US/Russia/Other powers in the Syrian CW, a new page must be opened based on effective cooperation, PUTIN needs to realize that Crimea chapter is over and the world needs to move forward. This scenario is much better than the special war to continue.

“Travel becomes a strategy for accumulating Photographs” Susan Sontag

Thank You,


THE PASTORAL LOVE

June 9, 2014

THIS IS AN OPEN LETTER TO THE MARONITE PATRIARCH of ANTIOCH and the WHOLE LEVANT.

Cardinal, Sir.

Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.” Matthew 19: 14

It is common sense to accept that the pastoral letter and message of Christianity is to spread the word, in a prophecy of belief. Life is about people; hence thoughts, emotions and actions need to converge to enact a design of progress.
While Monotheism in the holy Orient consists of a common message, faith couldn’t avoid mixing temporal vision with political influence; it diluted the dogma and inflated the regulations for the collectivity.

Isn’t the “Raison d’être” of Lebanon to define the correlation between the classic spiritual message and the geopolitical national interest? The MARONITE church struggled since centuries to condense the independence of the white land (LUBNAN) in an entity of freedom.
The freedom beyond diversity is a cause, very enriching in tolerance, and pervasive in human acceptance.
MARONITE DIOCESES were inaugurated in LOSANGELES and in SAOPAOLO and the trend is set for the MARONITE pivot to MUMBAI and SHANGHAI to become within reach, in a non distant future. The Lebanese Diaspora, all of it, is distinguished in giving and in love.

Some will debate the modern role of the MARONITE pastoral mission to reach its global zenith with humanity, yet everyone agrees that the fulcrum of the SEE of BKERKE’ goes hand in hand with BAABDA in elevating the peaceful cedars to fond with mother earth.
This is not because Lebanon should remain factional or confessional, but simply because Lebanon will require its flout to be filled by the stream of the universal ether.

“A word or a smile is often enough to put fresh life in a despondent soul.” Thérèse de Lisieux

Father!

Where do we stand today in the presidential vacuum, with a persisting lack of quorum? How can you play an embracing role, ending the impasse of the republic? Is it by calling on a protest movement and/or by promoting an advanced proposal to set an example in governance for citizens of all kind and all colors?
Shall we wait eternally for the Lebanese mafia to settle its own divergence or for the regional ramifications to pick a name for us?
Can we hold our breath for thieves, filibusters and profiteers to guide Lebanon into dissolution?

Needless to say that you father must lead with a secure path the nation to the shore of amenity.

“Be who God meant you to be and you will set the world on fire.” Catherine of Siena

The advancement of the Lebanese interest and of the MARONITE pivot, stands in an incremental initiative that you will need to adopt and enact.
In Lebanon today there are two platforms, one having a social agenda (wages, women rights, economic recovery, devolution, social equality and security, etc), the second having a corporate agenda (vested interests,banking sector, privatization, neutrality, refugees camps, non belligerence with racist Israel, etc), both have visions for governance, and points in common such as the army preparedness, and the oil and gas exploitation. The Lebanese interest stands in generating accountability on both and advancing the benefits for the responsible citizenry.

It is common place that in absence of an elected resident in BAABDA, the legislative branch can’t proceed as much as the delegated body (Cabinet) can’t shoulder the president’s powers but partially.
The deadlock is evident, strikes are called, downgrades are announced, even if at some stage we can think that an intersection between different players will emerge imposed by the game of the interests. The Mafia needs the state to function in order to continue running its illegal business, and armed parties need the state to be a mirror behind which to advance their own geopolitical agenda.

Entangled as we are in the regional and international precarious environment stretching from UKRAINE to GAZA, we Lebanese can’t afford to lose faith.

“Liberty can’t be established without morality or morality without faith”. Alexis De Tocqueville

The latest presidential narrative introduces the strong as a concept of leadership, but strong in what? We are fed up from the war lords, princes of deceit. We don’t want Gemayel , Franjieh, Aoun or Geagea.

Therefore Father, the incremental initiative of BKIRKI will have 3 stages, the first will call on 2 TV debates between 2 contenders: ZIAD BAROUD and NADINE MOUSSA, broadcasted by the CHURCH TV and held open door, where different anchormen and women will address the candidates in different questions and topics.
This democratic debate between different platforms is very healthy for LEBANON. It exerts pressure on deputies to go to the parliament and elect the president from the selection HIS BEATITUDE picked up.

Whenever the vacuum will persist, the second step will be that you will hold together to other churches notables, the PRESIDENTIAL MASS in MARTYR’s SQUARE or at BIEL, on June 29. A further public pressure on the failed elite and on regional actors to spare us their selfishness.

For the triumph of Lebanon, your march will continue up to the end of July in the third stage, where you will ask the parliament for a national address, yes Father you will go to the illegitimate and extended parliament and talk to the deputies representing the nation, informing them that there will be no more extensions and that you expect them to elect a president immediately.

I am certain that the dynamics will play into your strategy, and a further reflection will lead us to the electoral law, introducing the second chamber, where several options are already known.

Based on the above some will reply with a rebuttal indicating this as a flagrant and blatant interference, others will direct their angry reaction on you, yet all those who have no sins will be silenced by your pastoral love.

Cardinal Sir,
Wasn’t water transformed into wine? Yes it was says the word.

Raise Father your baton to the lord almighty and draw the line of the presidential election.
It is narrated in the hadith Sahih Muslim that the prophet Mohammad (may peace be upon him) said “Truffles are part of the ‘manna’ which Allah, sent to the people of Israel through Moses, and its juice is a medicine for the eye “ . Moses led the people, crossed the avid desert and received the manna.

This is our MARONITE destiny; this is our pastoral love to settle under the stars, professing the word of discipline, solidarity, modernity and guidance.

“When the people fear the government there is tyranny, when the government fears the people there is liberty.” John Basil Barn-hill

THANK YOU ,


“RES PUBLICA LIBANI”

June 3, 2014

Dear Reader,
Greetings and Good Day,

“Difficulties strengthen the mind, as labor does the body.” Seneca

As the presidential vacuum persists, and the cabinet is debating how to proceed and move forward, a major question investigates the parliament performance and its life span. In truth as we are getting closer to the deadline to call for a general election in Lebanon, we ignore beforehand what was the illegitimate purpose to extend the parliament mandate until next November. Some will identify in security matters the reason behind the extension, others will debate that national events representing the ritual in the institutions must be fulfilled. This is exactly where our nation stands in its moral and ethics: are we a republic of mercantile nomads or are we a republic of decent workers spread over the entire planet?
Whenever we examine the Lebanese achievements since 1814, we can witness at least 5 waves of Lebanese emigrations and 4 waves of immigration. In 200 years of history, the national heart of the people, expressed self determination and it was crafted by colonial powers. Geopolitical circumstances generated a statehood coupled to a major demographic alteration. While it is true that Lebanese thieves, profiteers and filibusters exploited the national panorama for their own and selfish interest, it is also true that the citizenry couldn’t fix the system in a modern way to benefit from the state. Different moments signed traumatizing events in Lebanon 1860, 1880, 1914, 1926, 1946, 1958, 1961, 1967, 1973, 1978, 1982, 1989, 1991, 2001, 2005, 2008 and 2013/2014. Religion and corruption subdued the citizen and established the rule, where the Lebanese will lose to their fate. A heavy burden, a destiny signed, either to travel abroad or enter the ranks of the corrupted system, or grow the ranks of the militias financed by foreign powers. Lebanese allegiance was always expressed in terms of temporary gains and immediate benefits; hence the nation lost its splendor and became a leader in failure. The Lebanese republic of mercantile nomads wakes up from the winter dormant attitude, to enjoy some summer sunshine in festive parties, regardless of any checks and balances. Lebanese nomads communicate worldwide through viber or skype with the extensive community spread everywhere, they are high tech, diligent in appearance, smart workers, builders, fashionably individuals, however mercantile in their rules, pirates in their daily code, looking for parleys as eternal tactics. Accountability and/or responsibility is synonym of irrelevance and insignificance for the Lebanese nomads; yet again elections are an opportunity of immediate profit, and never to establish a correlation, a national benchmark. Yet again we are heading to an extreme volatility where the nation is governed by the same thieves, profiteers and filibusters, who will do all possible to replicate themselves , and exploit the essence of the citizen and empty the valor of the state.
In my perspective there are two options at this stage and these are either a popular movement such as Renaissance, Hinduism, Bolshevism, or the Vietnamese resistance, that will carry a civil cause and call for a boycott of the general elections coupled to the change of the system and a new civil accord; or else a perpetual embrace of bigotry, chauvinism and narcissism in different forms will erase the civil society.
The Lebanese national security is constantly subject to foreign and internal threats, and unless the people wakes up and face the emergency, there will be no future ahead. I tend to believe that decent workers represent the majority of the people and that these are always pursuing a peaceful life to establish a prosperous perspective to themselves and their own families, perhaps though they ponder from a prism of marginality rather than interactivity.
Here comes the role of leadership to guide and indicate the route for peaceful change and a new social accord. Can Lebanon be reformed?
The country is caught from one side, by the regional context of revanchist autocracies, of tribal retrenchment, of confessional dogma, national divisions and racist restoration and from the other side by internal strife, internecine divergence, state dissolution, rampant corruption and institutional mediocrity.
Is there a collective way out of the emergency? Yes there is, and a new republic is upcoming, unavoidably.

“Everyone must look beyond short-term national interests. This way we can achieve results that will be visible in our citizens’ lives.” MRS. Tarja Halonen, former president of Finland.