Conflict & Justice

Lebanese politics: what's next?

The question now is whether the government and opposition will agree to share power or whether street battles flare up again? The answer is clear for this diplomat: he believes the precision with which Hezbollah has divided and conquered its opponents in the last week shows the group has been planning an attack like this for some time. He says endless bumbling by the government gave Hezbollah the pretext to extend their reach. The implication is that Lebanon will become a country under the thumb of a single foreign power: Iran. This advisor to the government says analysts should ditch the old canard that support equals control because that goes both ways. He says the opposition is interested in negotiations but the government has repeatedly bargained in bad faith in the past year, so he says roadblocks and other modes of civil disobedience will continue. Some analysts say opposition forces may not be interested in total conquest but will wait out the government to get what they want. Other analysts say the two sides have seen the abyss and don't want to fall in, and negotiations could take place in the coming weeks. The real sticking point may be an election law to reflect Lebanon's changing sectarian demographics, as demanded by the opposition.

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